World Cup 2019: 5 reasons why West Indies can cruise to final 4
The two-time champions have kickstarted their World Cup campaign with a comfortable victory against underdogs Pakistan.
Published - Jun 1, 2019 7:43 am | Updated - Jun 1, 2019 7:43 am
The ICC Cricket World Cup is the most celebrated event of this sport and there is no better host than the home of cricket, England. The opening matches have been one-sided but the action is expected to pick up as the tournament progresses. The fans have been ecstatic and the most popular team, Men in Blue is yet to kick-start their campaign. It will be a showdown of heavyweights in the coming weeks.
On Friday the two-time champions West Indies started their drive in control mode as they won their tie against Pakistan easily. The team played efficiently in all the departments. Some of their stars seemed to prove a point, and if they will repeat their execution it will be difficult to beat them. By taking a close look at their squad one can say that they can make it to the semi-finals if they play consistently.
Here are the five reasons why Jason Holder’s men can make the cut to the final four
1. Talented Youngsters
The young cricketers always change the dynamics of a side, and it is important for a team to nurture them as they will be leading the charge in the near future. Of late the cricketing system of West Indies has churned out players on a regular basis. These players are drafted into the international side after showcasing their skills in the U-15 and U-19 levels. The Caribbean team is entering the 2019 World Cup with a bunch of youngsters in their squad and all of them are immensely talented.
Shai Hope has been a sensation in the past one year as he is averaging 80 in ODIs. Shimron Hetmyer has already awed the cricketing fraternity with his power game and Oshane Thomas will be keen to stamp his authority on the opposition with his fierce fast-bowling. Nicholas Pooran and Fabian Allen have shown their potential in the T20 leagues around the globe. So these lads will definitely help the team in running deep in this championship.
2. Game-changing all-rounders
Nowadays one-dimensional cricketers rob the team of flexibility which is very important in white ball cricket. These individuals can change the course of a game with an inspired performance in one of the departments. In multi-nation tournaments, skipper requires a balanced playing XI which allows him to use different combinations in crucial ties. Over the years the island nation has always produced some of the eye-catching all-rounders.
Currently, Jason Holder is one of the most precious all-rounders in world cricket as he is ranked No.1 in test cricket and No.8 in ODI cricket. Accompanying him is Andre Russell who has been in red hot form in the IPL and has the ability to stun the opposition with his brute power. Then there is Carlos Braithwaite who has the experience of pulling off miracles on the cricket field. These cricketers are game-changing all-rounders and their performances will be critical in deciding the fate of the team.
3. Pace Quartet
In the history of the game, the batsmen have invariably struggled against shear fast-bowling. A speedster who can clock consistently over 90 mph can be a weapon even on dead tracks, and on helpful surfaces, these players can crack open even the best of the batting teams. Nobody can forget the 80’s famed pace quartet of Windies as they used to make the opposition dance to their tunes. In this edition, the team has a bowling unit that consists of quality pacers.
The seasoned campaigner Kemar Roach has been in good form and earlier in the year he showed his wicket-taking abilities in the test series against England. Oshane Thomas looks a good prospect for the side, and Shannon Gabriel will be eager to prove his mettle in the ODI cricket. Sheldon Cottrell can also generate pace with his slingy action and the skipper Jason Holder will be a threat on seaming pitches. Andre Russell can also surprise the batsmen with his mean bouncers so it can be said that the team’s pace battery is fully charged.
4. Belligerent Strikers
Since the last edition of the championship, the bat has dominated the ball in the 50 over cricket. The scores of 350 are chased down easily and even the 400-mark is not an elusive record anymore. Along with the short boundaries and flat pitches, the hitting prowess of batsmen has improved extensively in the last few years. The Caribbean land has given the world of cricket some of the best strikers, and it is no different in the 2019 World Cup.
The Universe Boss, Chris Gayle can still induce fear in the minds of quality bowlers and his hitting standards have never been out of fashion. Shimron Hetmyer can really strike the ball out of the park, and then there is Evin Lewis who can tear apart any bowling attack with his remarkable hitting. See the ball, hit the ball is the mantra of Andre Russell and everybody knows the finishing skills of Carlos Braithwaite. These belligerent strikers will enjoy their time in England and their form will be quintessential for the team’s successful campaign.
5. Visionary Leader
In a tournament like World Cup leadership is very important as the skipper will have to harness players in a particular method. The captain has to define the role of each individual, and every small mistake will cost the team in a big manner. In the past, the island nation has been led by some of the iconic players and they brought many laurels. In 2019 World Cup the team will be vying for its third 50 over title under the supervision of Jason Holder.
The Barbadian cricketer has been a torchbearer for the Windies cricket and his contributions have helped the nation revive its cricketing aura. Jason is a brave captain who always stood up for the team in difficult situations. He has put the team’s interests ahead of his own regularly and has backed every player in the squad. Though his captaincy record is not impressive, he has guided the team in murky waters which is a sign of a good leader. Since last year the team has started performing to its level and the vision has been provided by Jason Holder.
These qualities will definitely make West Indies one of the favourites to make it to the final four of the 2019 World Cup.