World Cup 2019: Alex Hales picks his top four teams of the tournament

He was hopeful of not repeating the mistakes they did in the Champions Trophy semi-final.

Alex Hales o
Alex Hales. (Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images)

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England star Alex Hales is hopeful his country can learn from the past mistakes and finally win their first-ever World Cup this year. Currently ranked number one ODI side in the world, England are the firm favourites to lift the title at home this summer. The Eoin Morgan-led side has become one of the most feared teams in the world since their debacle in the 2015 World Cup when they exited the competition at the group stage after a humiliating loss to Bangladesh.

But under Morgan’s inspired captaincy, the Brits have completely transformed their fortunes in white-ball cricket. Players like Hales, Morgan, Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Jason Roy and others have made England a formidable outfit in ODIs. Since the exit from the last World Cup,  England have won 53 out of 81 ODIs they have played so far. During this time period, they also racked up the highest total in ODI cricket when they scored a staggering 481 against arch-rivals Australia.

In fact, England have not lost even one of their last ten series. In the last couple of years or so, they have won in Australia and New Zealand as well as beating Australia and India at home. Unsurprisingly, they have been labelled as the firm favourites to go all the way in the mega-event at home. And while Hales admits that his team is the favourite, he is hopeful his teammates learn from the mistake as he pointed out the unexpected loss in the semifinal of 2017 Champions Trophy.

“England are the favourites and that is based on what we have achieved in the last four years, which has been fantastic. That is why we are currently ranked the No 1 ODI team in the world. To not have lost a series in the last 10 ODI series shows that we are the in-form team.

“But as we saw in the last Champions Trophy anything can happen when it comes to knockout cricket. Hopefully, if we play good cricket at the World Cup we will get through to the knockout stages and then it’s all about how we perform under-pressure in those games. Hopefully, we’ve learnt from our past experiences and can go all the way,” Alex Hales told Sky Sports.

Other three teams?

Alex Hales also predicted the four teams he thinks can go the distance in the competition. After naming England, the opening batsman picked India, the defending champions Australia and reigning Champions Trophy winners Pakistan.

“We all know that India are always a seriously strong team when it comes to World Cup tournaments. But with Pakistan, you never quite know what Pakistan you are going to get. If they turn up, on their day they are an unbelievable team as we saw in the Champions Trophy, so nobody can rule them out.

“We also have Australia who by winning the recent series in India showed that they shouldn’t be written off, especially if they have all their pacemen available and with David Warner and Steve Smith back in their ranks. So, I would say that England, India, Pakistan and Australia are the four main teams in the running to lift the World Cup,” Hales further added.

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