Above being a die-hard cricket fan, I’ve never had a chance to witness cricket matches live in the ground. But has that ever stopped me from enjoying every moment at by home? No. Because that is what cricket magic does to one. It is equally fun, being the off-field support for your team and praying for their victory. So guys, let’s start off by saying a quick prayer for the Pakistani cricket team.
Talking about watching cricket at home, surrounded by loved ones, be it family or friends is an experience one must always have. If you’re worried about decorations? Don’t worry as I’ve already covered that in my blog. Just a bunch of easy hacks to live the moments to fullest while watching the match and praying that Pakistan wins it this time.
One vital question; what is the best part about cricket? Difference of opinion. Just like different teams face rivalries, the fans and supporters face the same rivalries… among peers and family members, because that’s what sports is all about. And trust me, that’s the fun part of any game. How everyone’s choice differs, every family member has a different favorite player, they root for. But what only matters id the team they’re supporting. This causes the rivalries that spring within the family members as different alliances are formed around teams. But at this stage what is important? Praying for team Pakistan, regardless of you supporting any team.
Reliving the past:
Before unveiling the list of the star players from every team, let’s relive some moments from the final between World cup 2015, played between the ‘black caps’ New Zealand and the ‘baggy greens’ Australia.
Both the teams were equally hungry for the win as they were blessed with explosive batsmen and power hitters coming in at the appropriate times. They have had quality fast bowlers and are terrific fielding sides. Under the sharp captaincy of McCullum, New Zealand were the only unbeaten squad in the World Cup, playing an attacking brand of cricket. Their matches being all about great bowling, swing, seam and fast. Whereas the road for Australia was not as smooth, began with thumping England, washing-out against Bangladesh lost a thriller against New Zealand. As this was a roadblock between the baggy greens and finishing at the top of the group, Australia smashed Afghanistan then won a high-scoring game against Sri Lanka before having it easy against Scotland. At the end of the tournament, Australia had their chance of beating the unbeatable Kiwi’s, took it and emerged victorious! Australia won the final by 7 wickets in hand.
Let’s see if their players can help both the teams retain their position in this world cup.
Look out! Look out!
With the massive cricket frenzy coming our way, what makes a competition worthwhile? Of course, players who’re ready to outshine every possible department, redefine teamwork and lead their teams to victory by becoming a threat to every other competing team.
Let me shed some light on some of the most important players of the 12th edition of World cup, 2019 and wonder what would go down once they face each other..
Virat Kohli: (India)
The biggest star of not only the Indian cricket team but also the cricketing world, Kohli currently ranks the 1st position in the best batsman according to the ICC ratings. Not just a power hitter, but he is one of the best captain’s to drive his team, who will do everything in his power to lead his team to victory. Having an experienced player like Kohli, there is no doubt that the other teams are in for either a ride or die against Team India, as he’s not the only gem of the best batting line-up. But he sure is one of a kind to lead his team under pressure, that too easily.
Would he be an easy target for bowlers like Mohammad Amir or Rashid Khan? Probably not but then again these bowlers don’t come in slow. Guess we’ll have to watch the matches to find out how the number 1 batsman goes down.
Chris Gayle: (West Indies)
Even though the power hitter ranks at the 39th position of top batsmen, but being the player Gayle is, he in undoubtedly the man to take his team to victory. Facing 804 fixtures in his career and scoring 507 runs, he tops his team ranking and his credentials to support this statement that he would be a fundamental source to drive his team to victory. Gayle has currently been in an amazing form to score those runs by being his usual self and scoring those sixes for West Indies and put across a decent total against his opponents.
But would his wicket stand against bowlers like Bumrah or Mitchel Starc?
Let us know in the comments below.
Jofra Archer: (England)
Even though the entire Team England is the one to look out for, Archer- the Barbados born all-rounder, has created quite a buzz on being selected in the squad for the world cup. To get the pulse racing, a fast bowler like him, sending pace deliveries to any batsman that faces him, must be cautious as this bowler is quick with his attack.
Rashid Khan: (Afghanistan)
Being called the ‘jewel of the crown’ for Afghanistan, his attributes include being the top-ranked all-rounder; a wristy leg spinner, a great fielder and handy big hitter down the order, Rashid Khan stands at number 3 under the banner of top ICC bowlers.
After showcasing his magic in T20’s earlier, this will the first world cup for this lad. Rashid didn’t just make it, he redefined what leg-spin could do in short formats and thus has become a bonafide star of different matches. He’s a fast bowler, with sharp turn and an indistinguishable googly making his bag of tricks is allied with absurd accuracy and calm. Not just balling, but Rashid Khan has proved to be a power hitter, as well, when his team needs him.
Let’s see if he impresses the cricket-observers to become a global star.
Angelo Matthews (Sri Lanka)
Being one of Sri Lanka’s highest-rated players according to ICC rankings, Matthews ranks at number 39 in top batsman and owns the 74th position under top bowlers. Being Sri Lanka’s star player Angelo Matthews needs to hold, and be able to shift gears when Sri Lanka needs to push on during this world cup season as the time hasn’t been in his favor. No doubt the player has been the sole reason in many match saving performances. Not only in batting realm, but Sri Lanka also required Angelo to pick-up wickets during crucial times.
Given the current conditions, this team will probably be in hot waters. There are too many squads richer in talent and consistency for Sri Lanka to cause any of the big nations’ trouble this summer as they make up the numbers.
Martin Guptil: (New Zealand)
An enigmatic ‘strokemaker’ by design, Martin Guptill can be said to be the backbone of Team New Zealand’s batting order over the years. When in flow, it is very difficult to stop this batsman because of his impeccable ability to hit and deal the pacers as well as spinners. In the 2011 World Cup, Guptill was the second highest run-scorer for New Zealand. Back in the 2015, he again performed fairly well as all over result was scoring 750 runs in 789 matches closing on to fellow team mate Ross Taylor, which made him the first Kiwi to notch up the bar in such a short time.
Glenn Maxwell: (Australia)
Glenn Maxwell, the powder keg in a line-up short on firepower, right after Aron finch, another Australian power house. But Maxwell has found his role in the middle order, as he responds with a string of substantial innings that does the damage required by the team to take it home. He’s a rare talent who can play shots and hit balls to places others never will.
But facing a tough balling line up like Pakistan, can this power house still perform?
Let’s pray for our boys everyone!
Mashrafe Mortaza: (Bangladesh)
Mashrafe is perhaps the most valuable and vulnerable cricketer in the line-up order of the team. Being the well sorted all-rounder that Bangladesh needs, his team is equally capable of beating higher-ranked sides in big tournaments and under pressure with the constant support of their Captain.
They made it as far as the quarter-finals in the 2015 World Cup, but the question right now is that can they prosper and perform under their current captain, who impresses the team daily?
Quinton de Kock: (South Africa)
‘de Kock has the ability to range his shots by the bowlers that he faces. Team South Africa have a strong balling line-up and hence heavily rely on their bowlers to win the matches. But when it comes to batting, the team looks over to de Kock to protect the middle order, supported with a strong opening display.
Even though he made his place in the team, ‘de Kock rose to prominence in 2016. As he started off with a couple of hundreds against England at home ground, before emerging as South Africa’s highest run-getter in the World T20 and was named in the ICC’s team of the tournament. One of his most memorable ODI played till date is the one where he destroyed Australia with a 113-ball 178 at ‘Centurion’.
Babar Azam: (PAKISTAN)
Saving the best for the last, the key player for Pakistan out of many this time is most certainly Babar Azam. Ranking at number 7 and scoring 781 runs in 846 matches, he has shown to be in a good form, which makes him as good as any batsman in the world. There aren’t many who have dominated Steyn in the bowler’s home conditions, but in South Africa Babar Azam came across to hit 16 boundaries off Steyn, on 66 balls faced.
But is this enough when the best batting line-up faces the best bowling line-up, India?
We must pray guys. Our team needs it, good form or not!
The stars of the cricketing world will face each other on the 30th of May in the World cup 2019. Let’s hope for this ride to equally crazy and fun-filled. But don’t forget to pray for Team Pakistan. Let’s bring this cup home guys.