West Indies cricket team. Pic: Cricket West Indies
Former Australian spinner Brad Hogg has named the four teams he believes will make it to the semi-finals of the 2021 T20 World Cup. Last week, the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the groups for the mega event that will be held in the UAE and Oman from October 17 to November 14.
Responding to a query from a Twitter user, who asked Hogg to pick his four semi-finalists for the 2021 T20 World Cup, the Aussie named India, New Zealand, England and West Indies. According to the former cricketer, their batting depth gives the four teams an advantage over the others. He wrote:
“India, New Zealand, England and West Indies. That is on what I have seen into the lead up. These teams seam to have stronger batting depth. #T20WC”
Apart from being the defending champions, West Indies are the only side to have lifted the T20 World Cup more than once. India won the inaugural edition in 2007 while England won the crown in 2010. New Zealand are yet to win the T20 World Cup.
In the official ICC T20I team rankings, England, India and New Zealand occupy the top three slots while West Indies are down at number eight. However, the Windies recently hammered Australia 4-1 in a five-match T20I series at home.
England defeated Pakistan 2-1 in a recently concluded T20I series. In their last T20I assignments, India got the better of England 3-2 while the Kiwis whitewashed Bangladesh 3-0 in New Zealand.
Michael Vaughan picks England as favorites to win 2021 T20 World Cup
According to former captain Michael Vaughan, England are among the favorites to lift the 2021 T20 World Cup. England are already the current champions of the 50-over World Cup, having won the event at home in 2019.
Speaking to the BBC a few days back, Vaughan opined:
“England have put themselves in a great position (to win the T20 World Cup) because they’ve got absolutely everything covered.”
Vaughan added that Liam Livingstone, who struck a magnificent hundred in the first T20I against Pakistan, will be the future star of England in T20Is. He said:
“He’s becoming a class act. The hundred he got on Friday will have given him a huge amount of confidence. He’s one we’re going to see a lot of over the next few years.”
England, Australia, South Africa and West Indies have been placed in Group 1 of the Super 12s for the 2021 T20 World Cup. India, Pakistan, New Zealand and Afghanistan are in Group 2. Two more teams will join the two Super 12 groups following the conclusion of Round 1.
Ireland, the Netherlands, Namibia and Sri Lanka are in Group A of Round 1, whilst Oman, PNG, Scotland and Bangladesh feature in Group B. The winners and runners-up from the two groups will progress to the Super 12s.