By News Team
15th October 2021
Eoin Morgan’s side can make history by becoming the first team to hold both the World Cup and T20 World Cup at the same time.
Ahead of the seventh renewal of the T20 version, we’ve run our eye over the leading contenders for the crown in the UAE.
England to bounce back from 2016
We are in a golden period of English One Day cricket, the like of which has never been seen on these shores before. When you think of unbeatable teams throughout history that have dominated the sport you immediately think of the West Indies in the 1970s and Australia in the 1990s, but what we have in this England team is a side that is so dominant in white ball cricket, it deserves to be mentioned alongside those with legendary status. If England can win this T20 World Cup, then that will almost certainly solidify their status as an all-conquering side.
The ECB management have placed a heavy onus on the development of the white ball side which has paid dividends, notably when England lifted the World Cup at Lords in 2019. However, it is not a success to just claim that achievement when there is another World Cup up for grabs, and this tournament would have been years in the planning for Eoin Morgan, as his retirement from steering the English One Day juggernaut looms in the not-too-distant future. He came close to lifting the trophy at the last tournament in 2016 only to be denied by a big-hitting Carlos Brathwaite, if you remember the name, when Ben Stokes was unable to control his death bowling in the final over when it looked as if England had one hand and four fingers on the trophy.
The scene of that sorrow for English fans came in India and once again hosting duties fall on Virat Kohli’s side, but due to restrictions games will be played in the UAE. Conditions will therefore be similar to the subcontinent, but not exactly the same. Which is an important factor to consider, because the pitches will be conducive to spin but not solely reliant on, and England’s bowling attack isn’t lacking in pace options. Nor is there spin for that matter, with Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali at their disposal, along with Tymal Mills, Chris Jordan and Mark Wood, there’s options for every eventuality.
England’s batting line up simply needs no introduction, packed with power and invention in every spot it cannot be diminished, which will be a factor in a tournament that is likely to produce some big totals and games are likely to rely heavily on the bat. England’s first game will be against the West Indies when the Super 12 gets underway, and at this stage they enter into the tournament as the 3/1 second favourites, behind India.
For all of England’s strengths outlined above, there is still the slight matter of getting past tournament favourites India. The host nation are currently priced at 5/2 and it’s not difficult to make an argument why they enter as favourites, but it is difficult to make the argument that the T20 World Cup is theirs to lose. Kohli’s side has plenty to prove and so does the great man himself. While most of the team will have spent the past few weeks playing in the IPL and becoming accustomed to the T20 format in the UAE, there can be an argument that this tournament might be one campaign too many.
Most of the squad arrived in England in the spring for their fixture against New Zealand in the World Test Championship final, which was immediately followed by a summer series against England. From that they travelled straight to the UAE for the IPL, and whatever way you look at it, they’ve played a lot of cricket this year – could that catch up with them here?
England, however, will be hopeful that they have the beating of India even without the above circumstances coming into play. While they may be missing two of their superstars in Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer, there is a depth to this side that is unmatched in world cricket and is one of the reasons why they deserve to be put in the 70s West Indies and 90s Australia bracket.