World Cup 2019: 5 Brendon McCullum’s predictions that might go wrong
Let us take a look at 5 such predictions, where former New Zealand cricketer might go wrong.
Published - Jun 1, 2019 8:52 am | Updated - Jun 1, 2019 8:52 am
The fever of the World Cup is engulfing the brains of every cricket follower around the globe. The experts and former cricketers have failed to resist their temptation of making predictions about the results and the standings. One such prediction recently came from the legendary Brendon McCullum.
He predicted the results of every match and backed it up with the final standings at the end of the league stages. India, England, and Australia being in the top three have become a common hearing, but predicting the fourth semi-finalist is a million-dollar question. However, there were many predictions that would have raised everyone’s eyebrows. Let us take a look at 5 such predictions, where former New Zealand cricketer might go wrong.
1. Pakistan defeating New Zealand
New Zealand losing to Pakistan seems a highly improbable thing. While the former has been in subtle form, the latter is going through the longest losing streak in its ODI history. Clearly, there has been a sky-high gap between the performance of these two teams.
Birmingham, the stadium where the match would be played, is known for high-scoring games. However, Pakistan lacks any power-hitter in the lineup other than Fakhar Zaman and Asif Ali. On the other hand, New Zealand has the right mixture of power-hitters and the players who can stick to the one end and play big innings. Therefore, predicting Pakistan to defeat New Zealand might turn out to be a wrong call.
2. Pakistan defeating Australia
Since the return of Steve Smith and David Warner, the world has seen a different kind of passion and energy in the team. The team has emerged as one of the ‘late favorites’ and struck the form at the last moment.
The story has been totally opposite of Pakistan. Their performance has been a shadow of the kind of team it is. They possess some extraordinary players, but for the team to perform, they need to rise to the occasion. They need to get back to winning ways and regain confidence if they have any chance of beating Australia. For now, it must be a cakewalk for the Kangaroos.
3. Afganistan defeating Bangladesh
Afganistan and Bangladesh have come out of two of the budding cricketing nations. To see them making to the World Cup gives a sigh of relief to the cricketing fraternity, but making it to the semi-finals would be an uphill task for both of them. Brendon McCullum predicted the same.
The match between these two teams would be a contest to watch out for. However, Bangladesh enjoys an edge over Afganistan because of a better batting lineup. They enjoy the services of experienced batsmen in Tamim Iqbal, Mushfiqur Rahim, and Liton Das. On the other hand, the opposition fast bowlers look vulnerable. Therefore, a lot will depend on how the spin trio fares in that match.
4. Australia defeating England
Though both the teams start as favorites, England might be too hot to handle for Australia. There has been a neck-to-neck rivalry between the two teams, but the kind of form England is in, it would take a special effort to defeat them.
Australia had defeated England in the warm-up game, but that was a pretty close game. One might not find that kind of collapse from the England team again. The match has been scheduled to be played at The Lord’s, where there is a healthy competition between the bat and the bowl. Although there is depth in the batting of both the teams, England enjoys an edge in the bowling. This might turn out to be the difference between both the teams
5. Sri Lanka defeating Windies
In the recent past, Windies drew its 5-match ODI series against England, who was looking invincible. Then it bamboozled New Zealand in a warm-up game. At last, they thrashed Pakistan to their second lowest score in World Cup history. All these things speak volumes about the kind of form that they are in.
On the other hand, Sri Lanka looks a team with the least chance of making to the playoffs. Instability in the selection has made them look a vulnerable side. Clearly, there is a vast difference in the form of the two teams. Also, there are numerous power-hitters in the Windies side, and none in SL, which won’t help their cause on a batting friendly Riverside Ground pitch.
All this makes Windies a clear-cut favorite against Sri Lanka, and Brendon McCullum might see his prediction going wrong for this match.