From tomorrow i.e 15th March 2016 the T20 world cup 2016 is going to start in India, though the qualifying round to main event started a week ago with Bangladesh and Afghanistan making to the top 10 teams playing for the cup.
India is a place where cricket cuts across all the socio-economic backgrounds, so when the Cup is in being played in its own backyard the excitement is going to be sky-high considering that last time India co-hosted the 50 over world cup in 2011 it became champion after 28 years. Nothing but lifting the cup again would matter for a die-hard Indian cricket fan.
T20 is a relatively a new format of the game, which even the teams have not figured out how to win consistently. Tests the oldest format had a set of batsmen and bowlers who would do the job for you, one-day cricket was all about rotating strike and slogging at start and end of the 50 overs. T20 the teams get confused on whether they need batsmen, wicket taking bowlers or all-rounders who can do a bit of both. As far as my understanding no teams had figured out the winning formula. Australia was always best in one-day format, the West Indies had the most naturally gifted test players ever seen.
Coming back to this T20 world cup its going to be exciting with lot of new stars in making. India the host nation, also know as “The Men in Blue” are the favourite going into the tournament followed by Australia and South Africa. The Indian side is balanced and has been playing well this format for past couple of months. Also the home condition should favour then both on the pitch and off it as well. Australia looks to be the most balanced side, but they havent won the cup before, but its the team which can definitely stop India juggernaut. South Africa also looks a promising side to lift the trophy having a balanced side just like the Aussies.
Before India can think of moving in the knockout stage it has to clear the group of death with Australia, Pakistan, New Zealand and Bangladesh. Of which only Bangladesh looks like minnows. New Zealand always plays big tournament like world cup well till semis. Pakistan is the dark horse of the tournament with the likes of Mohammad Amir in their ranks. If Pakistan plays to its potential then it would make India’s chances difficult.
The other group is very easy which South Africa should top easily. The other spot could be interesting 3-way contest with West Indies, Sri Lanka and England playing for the it. West Indies are bunch of talented individuals, Sri Lanka need to rise to the occasion as the team is in rebuilding phase. England’s attitude and Indian condition never gel. The other teams Afghanistan has a lot of catching to do.
One thing can be certain that the Indian games will be full house, even the warmup games featuring the home team went full house.
Simultaneously to the mens tournament the womens tournament is also being held in India with the Australian women team favourite to lift the trophy.
So sit back and enjoy the likes of Hamla, Sammy, Amir, Maxwell, “Men in blue”, and more in this edition of T20 world cup 2016 in India.