ICC World Cup 2019, held in England is getting ready to start on 30th May. This is the biggest cricketing tournament, and everyone is waiting with bated breath to watch this grand tournament. As we inch closer to the World Cup, we look at the World Cup Squads and analyse some of the strengths and weaknesses of each team.
The squad – Virat Kohli (c), Rohit Sharma (vc), Shikhar Dhawan, MS Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Vijay Shankar, Dinesh Karthik (wk), KL Rahul, Ravindra Jadeja
Strength – Looking at the squad while there are a few surprises, but mostly this was the predicted squad. Team India has won the World Cup twice and is not looking forward to making it a treble. Kohli has been in a good form and has managed to lead the team from the front in the previous tours. Team India has been performing well, and this time they have picked experience over-aggressiveness which can prove to be a great thought the process since a forum like the World Cup needs experience more than aggression. Players like Dinesh Karthik, Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni bring forth with the experience and the composed nature, which allows the younger players like Kohli or Vijay Shankar to take risks Team India now has a good bag if bowlers, all-rounders, wicketkeepers and batsmen.
Read More : How Indian Worldcup Cup Squad Fared In IPL 2019
Weakness– One of the major weakness of Team India in the 2019 World Cup, will be the heavy reliance on the top 3 or top 4. The middle order tends to falter, which can lead to problems if the first three batsmen are dismissed in quick succession.
Another issue is the English pitches. While in India, the pitches are more spin based, the pitches in England have a bounce and a swing. This can prove to be a challenge to the Indian bowling attack. They are not used to such pitches and might take time to read it properly.
Squad – Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Jos Buttler (VC & wk), Tom Curran, Joe Denly, Alex Hales, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, David Willey, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.
Strength – England has a deep batting line up, which gives both the openers and the middle order a great lot of freedom. They can play without fear and explosively. The English Team for 2019 World Cup, also benefits from the fact that players like Jonny Bairstow, Moeen Ali or Ben Stokes are in great form. All of these cricketers played brilliantly in the IPL 2019.
Weakness – The England Cricket Team are prone to choking in the end. They lack the fire in them which is needed to win the World Cup. They might be a side with the great players, but they have to conquer their weaknesses and get into a groove to actually win the World Cup.
Squad – Aaron Finch (c), Jason Behrendorff, Alex Carey (VC & wk), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa.
Strength – Australia has regained its lost status with a sudden burst of energy. With Warner and Smith back in the team, Australia is on track to recovery. Warner especially has been in great form in IPL 2019 and is also the current holder of the Orange Cap in IPL 2019. Australia also tends to be very dangerous when they find back that desire to fire off. This team has already won four times and is more than capable of doing it one more time.
Weakness – Australia has suffered major setbacks in their cricketing team. From the ball tampering scandal to losing several matches, Australia has never been in a worse state than this. With a reasonably younger team, they lack experience and might end up making up mistakes.
Squad – Faf du Plessis (c), Quinton de Kock (VC & wk), David Miller, JP Duminy, Hashim Amla, Aiden Markram, Rassie van der Dussen, Dwaine Pretorius, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Imran Tahir, Tabraiz Shamsi.
Strength – South Africa genuinely has one of the best teams in this ICC World Cup. They have a well-balanced team, with excellent batsmen, bowlers and all-rounders. They have a great chance of winning the World Cup 2019 with players like Hashim Amla, Faf Du Plessis, David Miller, Kagiso Rabada.
Weakness – This team needs to shed the Chokers Tag, and throw it away. In all the previous World Cups, they play with flair in group stages but end up suffocating and losing form in the later stages.
Squad – Kane Williamson (c), Tom Blundell (wk), Trent Boult, Colin de Grandhomme, Lockie Ferguson, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Tom Latham (wk), Colin Munro, Jimmy Neesham, Henry Nicholls, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee (VC), Ross Taylor
Strengths – They have a great and intelligent leader in the form of Kane Williamson and they have a strong top and middle batting order. Kane Williamson himself is playing some good cricket and leading from the front. They also have high-quality bowlers who swing the new ball, which is a very good factor when it comes to the English pitches, and they also have good spinners.
Weaknesses – The top order batsmen tend to become inconsistent and tend to falter. Their death bowling is also a problem, as their bowlers tend to give away too many runs. While, they might be able to tackle the weaker teams in World Cup 2019 and even dominate over them, but they will face a problem when it comes to the stronger teams like England, India or Australia
Squad – Sarfaraz Ahmed (c & wk), Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Abid Ali, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik (vc), Mohammad Hafeez, Haris Sohail, Shadab Khan, Imad Wasim, Hasan Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Junaid Khan, Mohammad Hasnain
Strengths – Pakistan tends to be very unpredictable and can well be the underdogs of the tournament. They have been touring, and their players also got enough rest, since they don’t play in the IPL. This advantage of getting to rest before the World Cup might prove to be vital since the players of the other teams do not have the same advantage. They also have a good set of fast bowlers
Weaknesses – Their major weakness also lies in the unpredictably that they possess. On certain days, they tend to lose from lower ranked teams as well. Both their batting and bowling performances are inconsistent and fail to fire when they really need it. Unlike previously, their team also lacks consistent fast bowlers, who can change the game around when in need.
Squad – Mashrafe Mortaza (c), Tamim Iqbal, Liton Das, Soumya Sarkar, Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Mahmudullah Riyad, Shakib Al Hasan (vc), Mohammad Mithun (wk), Sabbir Rahman, Mosaddek Hossain, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mehidy Hasan, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman, Abu Jayed
Strengths – They have a good and experienced set of batsmen who know their way around the English grounds. Their bowling is also seen good improvement.
Weaknesses – Their main downfall is their bowling. Even though it has improved, it hasn’t reached the level where it can prove to be lethal. Even of their batting line up puts up a good total, they might not be able to defend it due to their bowling attack.
Squad– Dimith Karunaratne (c), Angelo Mathews, Thisara Perera, Kusal Perera (wk), Dhananjaya de Silva, Kusal Mendis (wk), Isuru Udana, Milinda Siriwardana, Avishka Fernando, Jeevan Mendis, Lahiru Thirimanne, Jeffrey Vandersay, Lasith Malinga, Nuwan Pradeep, Suranga Lakmal
Strengths – Sri Lanka was once one of the most balanced squads which produced legends like Malinga, Muralidharan. Sangakkara and Jayawardene. While this squad might not be as great as that squad, it still has players like Thisara Perera and the fatal bowling attack of Lasith Malinga
Weaknesses – In the recent years Sri Lankan Cricket has not seen a lot of quality players. The top order has failed to make a mark, and their bowling except for the expertise of Lasith Malinga has fallen short.
Squad – Jason Holder (c), Evin Lewis, Darren Bravo, Chris Gayle, Andre Russell, Carlos Brathwaite, Nicholas Pooran, Oshane Thomas, Shai Hope (wk), Shimron Hetmyer, Fabien Allen, Sheldon Cottrell, Shannon Gabriel, Kemar Roach, Ashley Nurse
Read More : The West Indies Flare In IPL 2019
Strengths – One of the greatest cricketing teams in the yesteryears, West Indies cricket feel sharply for a period of time. From fighting with the West Indies Cricket Board to lack of funds, this team had to face severe problems. Yet, the silver lining is here is the amazing performances of the West Indian players like Andre Russel, Chris Gayle and others in the ongoing IPL 2019. This has revived the lost hopes of the West Indian cricket team. The board has also tried to mend the broken bonds with the players, and are now trying to support the West Indian players.
Weaknesses – One big issue with West Indies can be, that most of their players play the 20 over format. The players are accustomed to that format and their performance in ODI format is still up for debates. The power hitting of Andre Russel might prove to be detrimental when it comes to the 50 over cricket format. They are also yet to completely solve their issues with the West Indian Cricket Board.
Squad – Gulbadin Naib (c), Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Noor Ali Zadran, Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Asghar Afghan, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Najibullah Zadran, Samiullah Shinwari, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Aftab Alam, Hamid Hassan and Mujeeb ur Rahman.
Strengths – This team is sure to cause some disappointments, and can even be a challenge to some powerful teams. Afghanistan has managed to produce some fine players like Rashid Khan, who can do wonders from both bat and ball. Their players have improved greatly and they can actually upset a lot of teams as they strart their World Cup 2019 campaign.
Weaknesses – One huge weakness for Afghanistan is the lack of experience. The players do not tour as much or play on international grounds. They are far less experienced than any other team in World Cup 2019. This hampers their chances greatly. Their batting order is also not the strongest and can prove to be their Achilles Heels.
Also published on Medium.