Saturday, 3 March 2012

Who will win the ICC Twenty20 Qualifiers?

This is a very difficult question and the right answer is really difficult to guess. It is a tournament with too many teams and too little slots to fill. Over that the teams are all really competitive with almost all teams on their day have capability to defeat all other teams. However said that not all teams have an equal chance. Given the squads, exposure of various team I would put the chances as follows

They are the most popular associates and clearly the favorites. They have got a great intelligent Captain who makes the most of the resources. The resources definitely are exciting lead by the dangerous Kevin O'Brien famous for his fastest century in the World Cup or the young and Exciting George Dockrell. The team has the talent and it will be tough be tough for most teams to overcome this talent

Can O'Brien repeat the performance. Let's hope so

They are a nation filled with passion for Cricket. Cricket unites this war ravaged country and the cricketers are the national stars. Afghanistan has one of the most potent talents who on their day can take on the mightiest names in Cricket. A fiery pace attack led by Hamid Hassan who can easily made place in most of the test sides or the calm and composed captain Nawroz Mangal, they would be making the most likely finalist with Ireland

He can single handily rip apart any Line Up

Surprised to hear this name. The Scots have a flourishing team whose average age is 24. The team stayed away from limelight as they missed out for 2011 WC, but in 2011 they have a performance that needs to looked into. They have played 4 ODI's and won 3, 2 against Netherlands and 1 against Ireland. They lost the 1 match to Sri Lanka. This is a team with real power works and taking them lightly is asking for trouble

Surprised this name is not there in the favorites, well don't be. The biggest name and star is not playing the qualifiers, yes we are talking of ten Doeschate is not playing and hence this clearly puts them off the field of favorites. Having said that the team has still got some good talent and surely have a clear chance to make it to Sri Lanka

Netherlands surely will miss him

Are you judging them by their performance in 2011 WC, well if the answer is yes, then my recommendation don't be fooled by that.  After the disastrous campaign the management has put all ticks in the preparation for this tournament. Firstly they formed the domestic structure which was important. Then they have given the young players loads of exposure which is very critical. The results have not coming in full swings but surely there are good signs. The visiting Irish team did not have it easy for the Inter Continental Matches.

The performance surely have dropped after the World Cup with the loss of a great player like Ashish Bagai. They are down but never out. With some exciting players like Harvinder Baidwan, Jimmy Hansra or Manny Aulakh and they on their day can take any other team.

A leader lost?

When Kenya visited them they smashed them 6-2 in a T20 series. Presently they get to play in the Domestic Series in South Africa, whose experience they surely are relishing and the performance can be seen on the field. They have played in a World Cup once and surely would want to reach the top level again. The Burger's form would be critical for the team

Here I would like to put teams who have a bleak chance of making into the World T20 but surely can spoil the party of teams who would be running towards it. The big names have to beware of them

1. PNG
The team is a result of hard work put in at Junior level. PNG have a great youth program with largest number of players involved in any Associate. The team has a great bowling line up. The one area where have opportunity is Batting and with former England Wicket Keeper Batsman Greaint Jones, surely makes them a very very dangerous team.

Will he be the X Factor for PNG

Like PNG and Scotland this is a team made from developing the youth. It is a very young team which were the runners up in the Asian region and gave a very close fight to Afghanistan in the finals. They surely can never be taken lightly at any momemt

They have the biggest fan base amongst the Associates, a nation filled with passion for the game of Cricket. They got a new coach who was responsible for transforming Canada and doing all things right to do the same in Nepal. The coach is getting good exposure for the team before hits Dubai. The team is the best at Junior Levels who have defeated the likes of SA, BD, NZ & WI and people are hoping that they will this time transform the performance at senior level

He is a local star. Can he make it in International Stage, an area he desrves

If we talk of upcoming teams one thing is common amongst them. Be it  Scotland, PNG, HK, Nepal or Uganda. The development of youth is the key for success. The party spoiling could be seen at the African Division One where they defeated the Party of the better rated Namibia and won the tournament. They also made the right noises when their both Franchise's reached the finals in the EAPL. They have been traditional chokers, but this is the tag they would be hoping to get rid of.

Remember a fat man taking a diving catch. Yes it was Bermuda itself. They have tasted the top level once and surely would be wanting to do that again for the most popular game of the country. The team surely have got great talents like David Hemp. Let's see how they fare in their biggest tournament of the year

6. USA
The nation is the second biggest market for Cricket in the world. There are over 20000 active players in the country. The country has got the mix of experience of India, Pakistan, West Indies, Sri Lanka, Australia and England. The team had once surprised the critics and reached the Champion Trophy. But, a big But the limitation is that the sports is run like a personal fiefdom under Mr Dainty where merit is often ignored. Having said that there are certainly some very talented players who can give a run for money to all the top teams in the tournament

Will US Cricket be luck enough to get rid of this sloppy faced Dictator

OMAN is a team formed of all but some expats. The team is aging and in T20 format that is not helpful

DENMARK joined the ranks of Scotland and Netherlands but over time the game somehow lost out. The nation has got some talent but I do not expect much action from them

ITALY is a upcoming team which draws its strength from likes of immigrants or overseas players of Italian origin. They overseas players are it X factor but I do not expect them miraculously reach Sri Lanka. Some wins here and there but not much besides that.

Finally this tournament will be a cracker of the tournament. Let us hope the best team makes it to Sri Lanka

1 comment:

  1. Interesting blog! One thing I disagree with you is about Italy though, who might surprise some people. With Gareth Berg (Middlesex CCC) opening the bowling and Michael Di Venuto (Durham CCC) opening the batting, in this short form of the game if they hit form (as they did in yesterday's game) they might be able to carry the rest of the team and cause some big upsets.