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Twenty20 World Qualifiers (13th March - 24th March) Thread

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Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler
Corporalhumblebucket
alfie
guildfordbat
Barney92
Fists of Fury
Biltong
atletico86
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Twenty20 World Qualifiers (13th March - 24th March) Thread - Page 4 Empty Twenty20 World Qualifiers (13th March - 24th March) Thread

Post by Duty281 Mon 12 Mar - 19:00

First topic message reminder :

Essentially, 16 teams are going for two places at this years World Twenty20 Tournament.

Which Nations?

Afghanistan
Bermuda
Canada
Denmark
Hong Kong
Ireland
Italy
Kenya
Namibia
Nepal
Netherlands
Oman
Papua New Guinea (Featuring Geriant Jones!)
Scotland
Uganda
USA


How Does it Work?

The 16 teams are split into two groups of eight and will play seven round-robin group matches in eight days to start off the event. The top three teams in each group will qualify for the knockout phase. The group winners face off against each other in the first qualifying final with the winner going to Sri Lanka and the loser getting a second crack at clinching a berth once the rest of the knockout phase unfolds.

The second and third place teams in each group face the possibility of playing four matches in three days during the knockout phase, meaning they may wind up playing 11 matches over 12 days in 30 degree Celsius conditions during the tournament, in order to claim one of the two available places alongside the ten Full Members at the 2012 ICC World Twenty20.

The team that successfully runs the gauntlet in the UAE will have the privilege of facing off against Australia and the West Indies in Sri Lanka. The runner-up at the qualifier gets to take on India, as well as reigning World Twenty20 champion England.

Useful Links

Complete Fixture List (Cricinfo)
Complete Preview (Cricinfo)
Squad Lists (Cricinfo)
Results Page (Cricinfo)
Points Table (Cricinfo)


Last edited by Duty281 on Wed 14 Mar - 15:08; edited 2 times in total

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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler Fri 23 Mar - 11:56

Biltong,

Is it any worse that the stupi dtriangular series they just had in aus where they played each other a million times in the group stages hjust to decide who got to play 3 finals in a row against each other?

France came close to winning the rugby world cup after losing two games befoe the final, one agaisnt the team they faced. The previous final was contested between two teams whod already played in the torunament too.

Group stages are group stages. Finals are finals.

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Post by Biltong Fri 23 Mar - 12:22

Well on that I agree PSW, but at least there it is who is most consistent tat goes through.

In an elimination tournament like this one it just makes no sense to me the way they have done it.
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Post by liverbnz Fri 23 Mar - 12:25

They did the same after the Ashes in 06/07. Australia, New Zealand and England played each other for what seemed like months (it was only 2 weeks!). England lost 5 of their first 6 matches, but won the tournament!

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Post by liverbnz Fri 23 Mar - 12:27

It makes perfect sense, as explained earlier in the thread. It reduces the possibility of a surprise result eliminating one of the favourites by making sure everyone has 2nd bite of the cherry.

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Post by Biltong Fri 23 Mar - 12:28

liverbnz wrote:They did the same after the Ashes in 06/07. Australia, New Zealand and England played each other for what seemed like months (it was only 2 weeks!). England lost 5 of their first 6 matches, but won the tournament!


So to get to the final it must have meant NZ lost all of theirs?
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Post by Mad for Chelsea Fri 23 Mar - 14:25

liverbnz wrote:It reduces the possibility of a surprise result eliminating one of the favourites by making sure everyone has 2nd bite of the cherry.

Which is my issue with it: sport should not be about ensuring the favourites get two bites of the cherry...

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Post by liverbnz Fri 23 Mar - 15:08

biltongbek wrote:
liverbnz wrote:They did the same after the Ashes in 06/07. Australia, New Zealand and England played each other for what seemed like months (it was only 2 weeks!). England lost 5 of their first 6 matches, but won the tournament!


So to get to the final it must have meant NZ lost all of theirs?

England won their final 2 games to pip NZ who only had 2 wins. They then went on to beat Australia in the final, despite the Aussies winning the 3 of their 4 group matches against England.

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Post by liverbnz Fri 23 Mar - 15:09

Mad for Chelsea wrote:
liverbnz wrote:It reduces the possibility of a surprise result eliminating one of the favourites by making sure everyone has 2nd bite of the cherry.

Which is my issue with it: sport should not be about ensuring the favourites get two bites of the cherry...

I don't disagree with you.

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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler Fri 23 Mar - 15:45

liverbnz wrote:
Mad for Chelsea wrote:
liverbnz wrote:It reduces the possibility of a surprise result eliminating one of the favourites by making sure everyone has 2nd bite of the cherry.

Which is my issue with it: sport should not be about ensuring the favourites get two bites of the cherry...

I don't disagree with you.

True but its not just the favourites who get two bites. Its the team who failed to beat them in the qualification stage too.

Counter argument : A qualification tournament should be about ensuring the best teams get through, espeically in a lottery format like T20.

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Post by Duty281 Fri 23 Mar - 16:32

So the winner of Namibia-Ireland tomorrow will join Afghanistan in the main tournament later this year. Game starts at 06:00 GMT tomorrow.

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Post by Mad for Chelsea Fri 23 Mar - 16:59

Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler wrote:
liverbnz wrote:
Mad for Chelsea wrote:
liverbnz wrote:It reduces the possibility of a surprise result eliminating one of the favourites by making sure everyone has 2nd bite of the cherry.

Which is my issue with it: sport should not be about ensuring the favourites get two bites of the cherry...

I don't disagree with you.

True but its not just the favourites who get two bites. Its the team who failed to beat them in the qualification stage too.

Counter argument : A qualification tournament should be about ensuring the best teams get through, espeically in a lottery format like T20.

Then it should have just been whoever topped the groups. Once you introduce a knock-out phase to a qualification tournament you accept the possibility of a surprise.

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Post by Shelsey93 Fri 23 Mar - 23:06

Just catching up on the last couple of days. Dawlat Zadran looks a great find for Afghanistan - with him, Hamid Hassan, Mohammad Nabi and Mohammad Shahzad they could really cause an upset in Sri Lanka.

Tomorrow's match is very difficult to call but Ireland's better big match record makes them favourites.

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Post by atletico86 Sat 24 Mar - 1:28

tomo's match is a tight one to call, if nambia's batsmen find their range once again ireland are in trouble...tight one to call but shud be interesting

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Post by atletico86 Sat 24 Mar - 7:29

irish bowlers were outsanding again...restricted nambia to 94/6, ireland's to lose

sorensen pick of the bunch wid 2-8 off 4overs

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Post by atletico86 Sat 24 Mar - 8:29

ireland win by 9wickets, we have been fantastic the last 3days...i duno why i ever doubted them against the other assocs.They started off slowly n have peaked brilliantly.

Stirling wil get get man of the match got 59not out off 32balls, as well as takin a wicket. The guy is a superb talent wid d bat n i hope he deosnt move to england in the future, he is more talented than morgan was at the same age (21). He has hit 41, 35, 61no, 33, 59no...altho against weak opposition

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Post by Biltong Sat 24 Mar - 8:58

Well thanks to the setup of the touramnet Namibia loses out on a deserved spot.

But well done to Ireland for taking the opportunities they were given.
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Post by atletico86 Sat 24 Mar - 9:00

from my twiter account i see a couple of certain engish cricketing journos seeing stirling as a future england player for their odi side...its seeing things like that, that make me hate the sport sometimes

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Post by atletico86 Sat 24 Mar - 9:03

biltongbek u shud be angrier at the icc at cutting the number of places at the T20 world cup in sri lanka from the originally planned 16 to 12 for no valid reason. Disgraceful decision from the ICC

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Post by Mike Selig Sat 24 Mar - 9:07

Ireland showing their quality in the latter stages having started slowly. They have the advantage of better fitness and most experience which means they know how to pace themselves in such tournaments. Looks like Namibia ran out of steam somewhat.

Overall sentiment is somewhat torn: on the one hand I do think Afghanistan and Ireland are the two best sides, and will give the best account of themselves at the main event. On the othher hand, I feel the result somewhat engineered (or at least, engineered in such a way that both sides had multiple opportunities to qualify). Also, I hope people don't use this result to say things like "Ireland and Afghanistan are far ahead of the others, we should concentrate ressources on them" etc.

Agree with Atletico on Stirling. IIRC he did state his ambition was to play test cricket for Ireland, which is more than can be said of Rankin. I think it's highly unlikely he ever plays test cricket for England, but am afraid for Ireland that England will pick him at least for T20s. Will he be able to turn them down?

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Post by Biltong Sat 24 Mar - 9:19

from my twiter account i see a couple of certain engish cricketing journos seeing stirling as a future england player for their odi side...its seeing things like that, that make me hate the sport sometimes

Yeah, I agree we all know it is happening in sport all over the world, but it is not necessary to "scout" so openly and in your face.

biltongbek u shud be angrier at the icc at cutting the number of places at the T20 world cup in sri lanka from the originally planned 16 to 12 for no valid reason. Disgraceful decision from the ICC

Not really angry about it mate, but dissappointed for a little country like Namibia who topped their group and then has to lose out on a spot becuase of a system that just doesn't reward their consistent performance.

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Post by Shelsey93 Sat 24 Mar - 12:15

An interesting observation on the Irish openers...

- Stirling has done much better for Ireland than he has for Middx.
- Porterfield has done better for Gloucs/Warks than he has for Ireland.

I personally feel Stirling is some distance off England recognition - he needs to produce on a more consistent basis for Middlesex; something he's really yet to do. However, age is on his side - he's only 21 though he seems to have been around for longer than that.

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Post by atletico86 Sat 24 Mar - 13:11

I dunno bout that Shelsey, Stirling averaged 53 wid 2 fifties n a century lst yr in the Cb40 wid a strike rate of over a 100, hardly failing to produce. Think he was their hghest run-scorer in the competition. I wil concede he was poor in the T20 competition.

Biltongbek: I feel sry for nambia, holland, scotland & canada; ho missed out on a qualification due to a vindictive decision frm the full members.

Interesting game this afternoon, afghan wil be slight favourites... i think the winners wil play aus & windies; while while losers india & england both difficult assignments for these sides.

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Post by Shelsey93 Sat 24 Mar - 14:16

atletico86 wrote:I dunno bout that Shelsey, Stirling averaged 53 wid 2 fifties n a century lst yr in the Cb40 wid a strike rate of over a 100, hardly failing to produce. Think he was their hghest run-scorer in the competition. I wil concede he was poor in the T20 competition.

Biltongbek: I feel sry for nambia, holland, scotland & canada; ho missed out on a qualification due to a vindictive decision frm the full members.

Interesting game this afternoon, afghan wil be slight favourites... i think the winners wil play aus & windies; while while losers india & england both difficult assignments for these sides.

Though Australia, West Indies and England are all beatable in this form of the game and in Sri Lankan conditions. India's batting power the sub-continent is probably too great for any Associate.

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Post by Barney92 Sat 24 Mar - 16:36

Stirling and O'Brien both gone. Hopefully Wilson can see them home though.

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Post by Shelsey93 Sat 24 Mar - 17:19

Well done to Ireland on winning the tournament. The best two teams have qualified in the end which, if we have have to have only two qualifiers, is probably the best result.

Ireland will join Australia and West Indies in their group whilst Afghanistan will meet India and England.

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Post by atletico86 Sat 24 Mar - 18:28

Paul Stirling was fantastic again...he is brill to watch when on fire, like i said before he is a better player than morgan was at 21...Afghanistan let themselves dwn in abit by their antics on the pitch, wot Aftab alam did was a disgrace. Thy are a good team tho n wil have the best bowler in associate cricket come Sri Lanka.

The game was a fantastic advertisement for assoc cricket. In particular the performances frm Shahzad, stirling, zadran & rankin were special. Stirling n Shahzad's were fantastic, while rankin's dismissal of Sadiq is unmissable. Hopefully its up on youtube to rewatch!

For me Ireland has their best ever squad n is much stronger wid d additions of sorensen & murtagh, if only we had a certain mercenary! I think we wil be competitive in those fixtures but a win mite be a bit beyond us.Ireland usually take a while to get going.

Going forward its vital we dont lose Rankin, who has been bowling the best ive ever seen him, but i think england will come calling over the summer, particularly for a cupla meaningless ODIs. I would prefer if he only switched if it were for a test match, but that wont happen. Its quite sad rly as England dont need him while we well n truly do!!!!

For the record i dont think stirling wud switch as he is one of the new breed of youngsters who see cricket with ireland as a career. However he wont hav to make that decision for another cupla yrs.

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Post by Shelsey93 Sat 24 Mar - 18:32

atletico86 wrote:Paul Stirling was fantastic again...he is brill to watch when on fire, like i said before he is a better player than morgan was at 21...Afghanistan let themselves dwn in abit by their antics on the pitch, wot Aftab alam did was a disgrace. Thy are a good team tho n wil have the best bowler in associate cricket come Sri Lanka.

The game was a fantastic advertisement for assoc cricket. In particular the performances frm Shahzad, stirling, zadran & rankin were special. Stirling n Shahzad's were fantastic, while rankin's dismissal of Sadiq is unmissable. Hopefully its up on youtube to rewatch!

For me Ireland has their best ever squad n is much stronger wid d additions of sorensen & murtagh, if only we had a certain mercenary! I think we wil be competitive in those fixtures but a win mite be a bit beyond us.Ireland usually take a while to get going.

Going forward its vital we dont lose Rankin, who has been bowling the best ive ever seen him, but i think england will come calling over the summer, particularly for a cupla meaningless ODIs. I would prefer if he only switched if it were for a test match, but that wont happen. Its quite sad rly as England dont need him while we well n truly do!!!!

For the record i dont think stirling wud switch as he is one of the new breed of youngsters who see cricket with ireland as a career. However he wont hav to make that decision for another cupla yrs.

Are you referring to Hassan or Zadran? Zadran looked brilliant again today - skiddy but quick and accurate (in some ways reminds me of Malinga)

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Post by atletico86 Sat 24 Mar - 19:08

hassan, zadran is brilliant too, but hassan is there talisman. Was a big miss for them, but the guys who filled in did well.

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Post by Mike Selig Sun 25 Mar - 7:24

Impressed with the way Ireland's big guns turned it on at the business end of the tournament. Certainly Stirling will be good enough to play for England in T20s at least, where consistency is not as important as being able to take teams apart. Not sure I agree with Atletico's statement that he's better than Morgan was at 21, I remember Morgan always had the world at his feet from the age of 17 or so.

Somewhat confused by Shelsey's assessment that England are more beatable at this format than India. England are far ahead of the other sides in the world in T20 recently, their record is incredible. Very few defeats in a format which usually sees close matches.

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Post by Shelsey93 Sun 25 Mar - 8:00

Mike Selig wrote:Impressed with the way Ireland's big guns turned it on at the business end of the tournament. Certainly Stirling will be good enough to play for England in T20s at least, where consistency is not as important as being able to take teams apart. Not sure I agree with Atletico's statement that he's better than Morgan was at 21, I remember Morgan always had the world at his feet from the age of 17 or so.

Somewhat confused by Shelsey's assessment that England are more beatable at this format than India. England are far ahead of the other sides in the world in T20 recently, their record is incredible. Very few defeats in a format which usually sees close matches.

I just think that, in sub-continental conditions and after a bit of a break, India's batting with Dhoni, Gambhir, Kohli, Rohit, Raina, Sehwag, Jadeja the likely Top Seven should put matches out of reach against the qualifiers. England may be the top T20 team but a look at their last few games in major tournaments against Associates is not promising:

World T20 2009 - Lost to Netherlands
World T20 2010 - Rained off against Ireland, when Ireland well have won
World Cup 2011 - Narrowly beat Netherlands
Lost to Ireland



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Post by Mike Selig Mon 16 Jul - 15:08

Group A:

England-India-Afghanistan:
tough group for Afghanistan, England are the best T20 side in the world by a distance at the moment, and India will be tough to beat in home conditions. Expect a couple of scary moments, but England should top the group ahead of India.

Group B:

Australia-West Indies-Ireland:
I fancy the West Indies to beat the Aussies here - their batting is ideally suited to this format, and the Aussies will find Narine quite a handful, particularly in these conditions. Watson and Hussey are the two key players. Can't see Ireland causing an upset, not enough in the batting, and their bowling will restrict, but not enough.

Group C:

Sri Lanka-South Africa-Zimbabwe:
South Africa have the more rounded team, but have historically struggled against spin, so their encounter with Sri Lanka should be an absorbing contest. Zimbabwe have plenty of decent slow bowlers too (Price, Utseya, Cremer, Lamb) but it is doubtful whether their batting (Taylor aside) will be able to cope with SA's bowling, whilst Sri Lanka won't find their spinners too much of a struggle.

Group D:

Pakistan-New Zealand-Bangladesh:
Pakistan will as per usual be the dark horses - with Ajmal, Afridi and Rehman they certainly have an ideal bowling attack, but it is as always their batting which is the main question mark. Apart from Umar Akmal who can really take the game away from the opposition? New Zealand will struggle and I think Bangladesh will beat them - don't underestimate the bangladeshis, their bowling will be tough to get away and their batting has the likes of Tamim, Ashrafull and Saqib, as well as Mushfiqur Rahim and Mahmadullah down the order.

Then for some reason (money) there's this ridiculous super 8 stage before semis and finals. I don't understand how the super 8s work, so won't bother with predictions there, but I think the 4 strongest teams are likely to be India, England, Pakistan and whoever comes out on top of the South Africa-Sri Lanka exchange.

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Post by ShankyCricket Mon 16 Jul - 21:01

I hope we remember that this World T20 is going to be held in SL. Not sure we have the batsmen to score runs there. Morgan and maybe Bopara the exceptions. WI, SL and India should reach the semis IMO. The 4th team could be either us or SA.

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Post by Shelsey93 Mon 16 Jul - 23:25

shankythebiggestengfan wrote:I hope we remember that this World T20 is going to be held in SL. Not sure we have the batsmen to score runs there. Morgan and maybe Bopara the exceptions. WI, SL and India should reach the semis IMO. The 4th team could be either us or SA.

Sri Lanka can go either way conditions wise - matches can be very high scoring, or low scoring. With so many of the matches being played at one venue (Colombo's Premadasa Stadium). I would expect the pitches to wear, whilst Hambantota and the new ground at Kandy have at times been seamer-friendly thus far, though it is difficult to predict exactly what we will get.

I would suggest that 5 teams can win this tournament - England, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and South Africa. Of those I would place India and England as the top favourites - England have been the dominant T20 side for over 2 years now, whilst India still have the power to bat their opposition out of the game, particularly if the surfaces play into the hands of the spinners. If it really turns then Pakistan have the trump card - 4 top quality spinners in Afridi, Ajmal, Hafeez and Rehman, whilst Sri Lanka shouldn't be ruled out in home conditions, although their bowling (including the spin department) looks a bit shaky. South Africa have the strike bowlers, more so than England and Australia in this form of the game, but there remains a question mark over their ability to make big totals, and bat against spin.

For England facing spin on the sub-continent is still a concern, and this tournament will be a big test for a pretty inexperienced batting line-up: Bopara and Morgan will need to fire, and we will have to employ the fearless approach that we did in the Caribbean. Our bowling looks strong enough you would think - particularly if you compare it to the likes of Sri Lanka and India.

West Indies would be my 6th favourites, but I don't think they'll win. Their batting is undoubtedly explosive, and Narine and Gayle are match-winners. But I'd back the Asian teams to play Narine better than Australia and New Zealand have, and I don't think the batting is disciplined enough to win a tournament (still an important value in T20). Australia will struggle for my money - they still haven't found a spinner that will worry the better sides (41 year-old Brad Hogg is likely to play), and it is hard to see them fielding the cutting-edge pace attack that served them well in the shortest format for a while - Lee has retired, Tait is always injured, Nannes has lost his nip, and Johnson is Johnson. And their batting will be very dependent on Watson, Warner and the Husseys.

I'd place New Zealand amongst the rank outsiders. They are generally clueless against spin, so I can't see them beating West Indies, Pakistan or India. Their pace attack can vary things well at times, but have no pace, and if a Sehwag, de Villiers, Gayle or even a Morgan gets goings will become cannon fodder. The batting is honest but it is hard to see them compiling 200+ totals. Having said that they've often punched above their weight at major tournaments, and what's to say they can't do that again. I'd back Bangladesh to beat New Zealand, and it will be interesting to see how well they can do if the team that turned up at the Asia Cup shows up - they reached the final and, probably for the first time in their history, looked a genuine force. In Shakib they have a proper spinner, and the other bowlers have shown signs of improvement. The batting is mercurial, but if it comes off they can live with anyone.

Zimbabwe have plenty of good spinners, but probably won't bat well enough to get through the group. Ireland have a proper batting line-up on paper - Stirling, N O'Brien, K O'Brien and Joyce are all genuine threats in T20. The format is unforgiving however and they'll have to play well to spring a surprise. I'd question whether the bowling is as good as the batting. Rankin and Murtagh are good county players, but wouldn't get that close to the England side. That leaves a lot on the shoulders of a 19 year-old in George Dockrell.

Lastly, we come to Afghanistan. I haven't seen them play much, but from the snippets I've seen it is clear that they have some genuinely dangerous players. Hamid Hassan and Dawlat Zadran would challenge for a place in many international teams as opening bowlers (I'd take them over most of India's seamers any day), and Mohammad Shahzad gives it a tonk. They will probably win some hearts, but they are in an exceptionally tough group. England are prone to losing to associates though...

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Post by Mike Selig Tue 17 Jul - 11:22

Shelsey93 wrote:
shankythebiggestengfan wrote:I hope we remember that this World T20 is going to be held in SL. Not sure we have the batsmen to score runs there. Morgan and maybe Bopara the exceptions. WI, SL and India should reach the semis IMO. The 4th team could be either us or SA.

Sri Lanka can go either way conditions wise - matches can be very high scoring, or low scoring. With so many of the matches being played at one venue (Colombo's Premadasa Stadium). I would expect the pitches to wear, whilst Hambantota and the new ground at Kandy have at times been seamer-friendly thus far, though it is difficult to predict exactly what we will get.

I would suggest that 5 teams can win this tournament - England, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and South Africa. Of those I would place India and England as the top favourites - England have been the dominant T20 side for over 2 years now, whilst India still have the power to bat their opposition out of the game, particularly if the surfaces play into the hands of the spinners. If it really turns then Pakistan have the trump card - 4 top quality spinners in Afridi, Ajmal, Hafeez and Rehman, whilst Sri Lanka shouldn't be ruled out in home conditions, although their bowling (including the spin department) looks a bit shaky. South Africa have the strike bowlers, more so than England and Australia in this form of the game, but there remains a question mark over their ability to make big totals, and bat against spin.

For England facing spin on the sub-continent is still a concern, and this tournament will be a big test for a pretty inexperienced batting line-up: Bopara and Morgan will need to fire, and we will have to employ the fearless approach that we did in the Caribbean. Our bowling looks strong enough you would think - particularly if you compare it to the likes of Sri Lanka and India.

West Indies would be my 6th favourites, but I don't think they'll win. Their batting is undoubtedly explosive, and Narine and Gayle are match-winners. But I'd back the Asian teams to play Narine better than Australia and New Zealand have, and I don't think the batting is disciplined enough to win a tournament (still an important value in T20). Australia will struggle for my money - they still haven't found a spinner that will worry the better sides (41 year-old Brad Hogg is likely to play), and it is hard to see them fielding the cutting-edge pace attack that served them well in the shortest format for a while - Lee has retired, Tait is always injured, Nannes has lost his nip, and Johnson is Johnson. And their batting will be very dependent on Watson, Warner and the Husseys.

I'd place New Zealand amongst the rank outsiders. They are generally clueless against spin, so I can't see them beating West Indies, Pakistan or India. Their pace attack can vary things well at times, but have no pace, and if a Sehwag, de Villiers, Gayle or even a Morgan gets goings will become cannon fodder. The batting is honest but it is hard to see them compiling 200+ totals. Having said that they've often punched above their weight at major tournaments, and what's to say they can't do that again. I'd back Bangladesh to beat New Zealand, and it will be interesting to see how well they can do if the team that turned up at the Asia Cup shows up - they reached the final and, probably for the first time in their history, looked a genuine force. In Shakib they have a proper spinner, and the other bowlers have shown signs of improvement. The batting is mercurial, but if it comes off they can live with anyone.

Zimbabwe have plenty of good spinners, but probably won't bat well enough to get through the group. Ireland have a proper batting line-up on paper - Stirling, N O'Brien, K O'Brien and Joyce are all genuine threats in T20. The format is unforgiving however and they'll have to play well to spring a surprise. I'd question whether the bowling is as good as the batting. Rankin and Murtagh are good county players, but wouldn't get that close to the England side. That leaves a lot on the shoulders of a 19 year-old in George Dockrell.

Lastly, we come to Afghanistan. I haven't seen them play much, but from the snippets I've seen it is clear that they have some genuinely dangerous players. Hamid Hassan and Dawlat Zadran would challenge for a place in many international teams as opening bowlers (I'd take them over most of India's seamers any day), and Mohammad Shahzad gives it a tonk. They will probably win some hearts, but they are in an exceptionally tough group. England are prone to losing to associates though...

clap Couldn't agree more.

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Post by ShankyCricket Tue 17 Jul - 11:36

I am surprised Pakistan is rated so highly. Their batting in the shorter formats is awful.

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Post by Mike Selig Tue 17 Jul - 11:39

But their bowling is probably the best in the world in those conditions...

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Post by ShankyCricket Tue 17 Jul - 11:46

And just while we are at it, I have got the Pakistan 15 man squad from Twitter
Hafeez,I Nazir, N Jamshed, A Shafiq, U Akmal, Shoaib Malik,K Akmal, Afridi, A Razzaq,Arafat,S Tanvir, Gul,Sami,Ajmal,R Hasan

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Post by Shelsey93 Tue 17 Jul - 12:31

shankythebiggestengfan wrote:I am surprised Pakistan is rated so highly. Their batting in the shorter formats is awful.

If we get 200+ pitches then we can probably forget Pakistan, but if it turns or even if it reverse swings, they can be very dangerous. There's nowhere to hide against Ajmal, Afridi, Hafeez and Gul.

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Post by ShankyCricket Tue 17 Jul - 12:39

I doubt whether their batsmen can score 150. They'd be dangerous well on 120 pitches. On 200 pitches, WI come into the fray.

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Post by Mike Selig Tue 17 Jul - 13:41

WI are very much in the fray on any pitch, because with Gayle, Pollard, Bravo etc they can score fast enough (even on tough wickets), and Narine will be a handful.

I just think their batting will have a bad day, and as Shelsey says they're not disciplined enough to grind out a score when things are against them.

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Post by ShankyCricket Tue 17 Jul - 13:44

Mike Selig wrote:WI are very much in the fray on any pitch, because with Gayle, Pollard, Bravo etc they can score fast enough (even on tough wickets), and Narine will be a handful.

I just think their batting will have a bad day, and as Shelsey says they're not disciplined enough to grind out a score when things are against them.
Do you think our batting is any better in SC conditions?

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Post by Mike Selig Tue 17 Jul - 13:50

If by "our" you mean England's then yes, definitely. More disciplined certainly, I would always fancy England to score 100 or 110, even when the going is tough, and that could just be enough. West Indies could just as easily be rolled over for 70 as score 150 on a difficult pitch - you know they'll just basically swing and hope.

Morgan is obviously a key player.

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Post by ShankyCricket Tue 17 Jul - 13:52

Really? We are heavily reliant on Morgan and Bopara, I'd have thought.

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Post by ShankyCricket Tue 17 Jul - 13:53

I think the likes of Bravo, Pollard, Smith and of course, Gayle are better players in the SC than some of our players, who are largely unproven in those conditions.

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Post by ShankyCricket Tue 17 Jul - 13:54

I think our best chance is to restrict sides to 140 odd. And we are good enough to do that. The WI bowling, Narine aside, will let them down I think.

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Post by ShankyCricket Tue 17 Jul - 13:59

Shelsey93 wrote:
shankythebiggestengfan wrote:I hope we remember that this World T20 is going to be held in SL. Not sure we have the batsmen to score runs there. Morgan and maybe Bopara the exceptions. WI, SL and India should reach the semis IMO. The 4th team could be either us or SA.

Sri Lanka can go either way conditions wise - matches can be very high scoring, or low scoring. With so many of the matches being played at one venue (Colombo's Premadasa Stadium). I would expect the pitches to wear, whilst Hambantota and the new ground at Kandy have at times been seamer-friendly thus far, though it is difficult to predict exactly what we will get.

I would suggest that 5 teams can win this tournament - England, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and South Africa. Of those I would place India and England as the top favourites - England have been the dominant T20 side for over 2 years now, whilst India still have the power to bat their opposition out of the game, particularly if the surfaces play into the hands of the spinners. If it really turns then Pakistan have the trump card - 4 top quality spinners in Afridi, Ajmal, Hafeez and Rehman, whilst Sri Lanka shouldn't be ruled out in home conditions, although their bowling (including the spin department) looks a bit shaky. South Africa have the strike bowlers, more so than England and Australia in this form of the game, but there remains a question mark over their ability to make big totals, and bat against spin.

For England facing spin on the sub-continent is still a concern, and this tournament will be a big test for a pretty inexperienced batting line-up: Bopara and Morgan will need to fire, and we will have to employ the fearless approach that we did in the Caribbean. Our bowling looks strong enough you would think - particularly if you compare it to the likes of Sri Lanka and India.

West Indies would be my 6th favourites, but I don't think they'll win. Their batting is undoubtedly explosive, and Narine and Gayle are match-winners. But I'd back the Asian teams to play Narine better than Australia and New Zealand have, and I don't think the batting is disciplined enough to win a tournament (still an important value in T20). Australia will struggle for my money - they still haven't found a spinner that will worry the better sides (41 year-old Brad Hogg is likely to play), and it is hard to see them fielding the cutting-edge pace attack that served them well in the shortest format for a while - Lee has retired, Tait is always injured, Nannes has lost his nip, and Johnson is Johnson. And their batting will be very dependent on Watson, Warner and the Husseys.

I'd place New Zealand amongst the rank outsiders. They are generally clueless against spin, so I can't see them beating West Indies, Pakistan or India. Their pace attack can vary things well at times, but have no pace, and if a Sehwag, de Villiers, Gayle or even a Morgan gets goings will become cannon fodder. The batting is honest but it is hard to see them compiling 200+ totals. Having said that they've often punched above their weight at major tournaments, and what's to say they can't do that again. I'd back Bangladesh to beat New Zealand, and it will be interesting to see how well they can do if the team that turned up at the Asia Cup shows up - they reached the final and, probably for the first time in their history, looked a genuine force. In Shakib they have a proper spinner, and the other bowlers have shown signs of improvement. The batting is mercurial, but if it comes off they can live with anyone.

Zimbabwe have plenty of good spinners, but probably won't bat well enough to get through the group. Ireland have a proper batting line-up on paper - Stirling, N O'Brien, K O'Brien and Joyce are all genuine threats in T20. The format is unforgiving however and they'll have to play well to spring a surprise. I'd question whether the bowling is as good as the batting. Rankin and Murtagh are good county players, but wouldn't get that close to the England side. That leaves a lot on the shoulders of a 19 year-old in George Dockrell.

Lastly, we come to Afghanistan. I haven't seen them play much, but from the snippets I've seen it is clear that they have some genuinely dangerous players. Hamid Hassan and Dawlat Zadran would challenge for a place in many international teams as opening bowlers (I'd take them over most of India's seamers any day), and Mohammad Shahzad gives it a tonk. They will probably win some hearts, but they are in an exceptionally tough group. England are prone to losing to associates though...
After their inexplicable choke against NZ in the Q/F last year, I'd have thought we would stop considering SA as title contenders. They will reach the semis and then choke.

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