Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The World T20 finally poised for a take off

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The World T20 Story so far... 

3 matches affected by rain. A must win game ends in a no result and we find out that West Indies make it to the Super 8s without winning a single game. More rain is expected and the ICC responds to questions of the scheduling of the tournament with “Everyone knew and agreed to the schedule”. Actually such is the pull of cricket’s newest format that ICC can organize a night game in the North Pole in the middle of the summer and make a profit. This one though has all the makings of another Champions Trophy from a decade ago when India bowled twice in the finals on consecutive days only for the second innings being washed out on both days. 100 overs of cricket and the trophy was shared.

Me No Love
The minnows, who don’t like to be called that we learn, had earned much sympathy and love during the 2011 World Cup and the previous edition of the T20 Cup 2 weeks ago or so. This time with most matches being lopsided, the minnows have been shown their place and the only love they are getting is based on ‘archived in statsguru’ performances. Much like the lifeline India’s seniors are enjoying

The Format
Even after a week, the tournament feels like its still in the warm up matches stage. SA have batted for all of 19 overs, England technically ‘threw’ their match against India for it was a game of absolutely no consequence and no matter how hard the ICC tries they just cannot design a format that can keep all stages interesting. In that the fault lies less with the ICC and more with the disparity of skills between the Test and the non-Test playing countries.

The Leading Unfavorites
India - I am not reading too much into the embarrassingly thumping win against England for India. For all its experience with the IPL, India seems to be a side just a nudge away from completely falling apart. Ever since Virat Kohli carried Sachin on his shoulders after the World Cup win, the list of seniors that India have had to carry is mounting. Sehwag, Gambhir, Zaheer… and now, Yuvraj. I was very excited with Yuvraj’s return and said to whoever would listen that he would be biggest thing in Indian cricket for a while but he just does not seem match fit to me. It’s only a matter of time when one of these non performing seniors will cause the camels back to break only for the blame to be shifted to Ashok Dinda.

Of the Other Unfavorites
England are not as stupid as they looked against Harbhajan and Chawla, South Africa are actually looking good, Pakistan likewise. Australia were mauled by Gayle and remain along with India the most unfavourites.

If the rains stay away most of the games in the Super 8s will be worth watching. Also with no baggage being carried forward from the previous rounds all teams start as equals. The idea of carrying forward points while it worked to create an incentive to take every group match seriously, had the downside of not allowing lower seeded teams any room to make a run to the top in the Super 8s. 

Better to have meaningless matches in the group stage than in the Super 8s

Personally, I would love for West Indies to win. 


Vidooshak said...

Pakistan and West Indies must count as the favorites right now with their spinners and dashers combination..
India is going to lurk and may even make the finals, but Virat can rescue them only so often.
South Africa, Australia and England have no T20 flair and method will take them only so far.
Sri Lanka and New Zealand....well...they won't win...no reason... :-)

livescore said...

I will say SriLanka and Pakistan both the teams are favorite in this T20 tournament and it is quite clear in my mind that Asian team will win this title.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone else checked out the new ICC Cricket app? Its a great way to keep up to date with cricket and especially the T20 world cup. Its free and has video highlights of every game- http://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/icc-cricket/id557159946?ls=1&mt=8