Author - Cricket Warrior

Our Picks For Best Players In The Last ICC T20 World Cup

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After what seemed like an eternity for cricket fans around to world, the 2021 ICC T20 World Cup got underway in the United Arab Emirates. You could tell that this tournament had an important level of expectation behind it, when some of the world’s most important sports betting sites, which usually focus on more mainstream wagering options like the best NFL picks against the spread were offering continuous betting options for cricket fans all over regarding the ICC T20 World Cup tournament.

While the tournament was to be held initially in India, health and safety protocol concerns made the organizers use the UAE as the saving grounds for one of cricket’s most important international events. Now, with the tournament finally finished, after 29 days of thrills and excitement that ended up seeing Australia surprising everyone far and near and beating New Zealand to take home their first-ever ICC T20 World Cup trophy, let’s take a look at our picks for the best players in the tournament.

Wanindu Hasaranga, Sri Lanka

If you’re an avid cricket fan then you’ve probably heard the name of Sri Lanka star Wanindu Hasaranga. Hasaranga, considered by many fans and cricket experts as the number one all-rounder in cricket showed once again why his claim to that title is pretty much set in stone. His performances throughout the tournament made him a pivotal part of his team’s success in the competition, having scored 119 runs with the bat, keeping his strike rate at an astonishing rate of almost 150. Also, his all-around fearless and competitive attitude gave Sri Lanka the fuel it needed to put up the most valiant fight in a group that was considered by many as the “group of death” with the likes of South Africa, champions Australia, West Indies, and England all joining them.

If to that we add the fact that he finished the competition as the leader in wicket-taking, amassing 16 wickets picked throughout all of the eight matches he played, he was one of the shining points of Sri Lanka’s team in the tournament.

Josh Hazlewood, Australia

Josh Hazlewood and especially his performances in the final instances of the ICC T20 World Cup earned him a spot on our list for top players of the tournament. Ever since erupting into the Australian National Team a couple of years ago, Hazlewood has become a very strong piece in the functionings of the Australians. He can easily be taken as the best fast bowler in the tournament, especially when it comes to powerplays. Hazlewood took his amazing performances for CSK in the IPL season to bring that same form into the World Cup tournament and help Australia on their way towards securing their first-ever title.

Again, it has to be said, Hazlewood’s best overall performance in the tournament came when the team needed it the most, against New Zealand in the finals of the tournament. He only gave up 16 runs in four overs while picking wickets from New Zealand stars Daryl Mitchell, Glen Phillips, and Kane Williamson, allowing his team to cement their stake for the title. 

 

Adam Zampa, Australia

When you take a look at the line-up that Australia took to the ICC T20 World Cup in UAE, you can start to understand why they ended up winning the tournament. In simple words, they were stacked to the brim in talent. With players like the previously mentioned Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Starc, and Patt Cummins to name a few, there was enough talent in the Australian roster to go around. But one player that truly stood out was bowler Adam Zampa. His playing can probably be taken as the most impactful, of course on a positive note for Australia’s bid for the title.

Zampa not only managed to leave the tournament as the second-best wicket taker behind the before-mentioned Wanindu Hasaranga but his performance against Bangladesh in the 34th match of the competition can pretty much be taken as one of the deciding moments in Australia’s run for the title. In that game Zampa came up as strong as ever picking up five wickets, holding just 19 runs in four overs, all while helping keep Bangladesh for just 73 runs. Australia had one of the best bowling line-ups in the tournament, and thanks to Zampa and his performances, everything ended up coming just right for the Australians.

Chennai Super Kings Prove Experience Is Invaluable

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The Chennai Super Kings won their fourth IPL title in 2021. They also extended their record of appearing in the most finals. This year it was the ninth time they have contested the final in the competition.

CSK had one of the oldest rosters in the IPL. Faf du Plessis (37 years old), Ms Dhoni (40 years old), Imran Tahir (42 years old), Robin Uthappa (35 years old) and Moeen Ali (34 years old) all starred for the champions.

The Super Kings finished the regular season in second place behind Delhi Capitals. They won nine of their 14 matches to qualify for the playoffs. Although they had a blip at the end of the regular campaign, losing their last three matches, they had more than enough points to make the post-season.

Dhoni’s side produced two big performances in the playoffs to lift the title. They defeated Delhi by four wickets to reach the final. The Super Kings then recorded one of their highest scores of the tournament to prevail by 27 runs against Kolkata Knight Riders in the final.

Chennai’s captain will now be looking to help India win the T20 World Cup. Although he is now retired from international cricket, Dhoni is a mentor to the team. India are +400 joint-favorites in the online sports betting to prevail in the UAE and Omar.

Runs Were Not a Problem for CSK In 2021

The top two runscorers in the 2021 IPL were both from CSK as Rutaraj Gaikwad and du Plessis finished their campaign with 635 runs and 633 runs respectively. Both players were very consistent across the year. Not only did they have impressive averages, but their strike rates were also high.

The highlight of the year for Gaikwad was his maiden IPL century against the Rajasthan Royals. The Orange Cap winner got his side off to a fast start in the final, scoring 32 runs from 27 balls.

Du Plessis, one of the leading South African players in the world, was just two runs behind his teammate in the leading runscorer standings, had another fantastic season for his franchise. Like Dhoni, the South African has made a lot of appearances for the Super Kings. This is his third title in the IPL.

Can Chennai Defend Title In 2022?

Only two teams in history have been able to defend their IPL title. Chennai managed it in 2011, while more recently, the Mumbai Indians did so in 2020. The Super Kings are expected to retain a strong roster for 2022 which will give them a great chance of a repeat success.

There are some reports suggesting Dhoni could step down as captain but continue to play as a batsman and wicketkeeper. Talks regarding his future are likely to take place after the T20 World Cup.

There will be two new franchises introduced to the competition in 2022 so it will be even more difficult to win the trophy. Chennai will once again have a lot of experience in their side which did well in 2021. They will be hoping to add more quality in the IPL auction early next year.

Chennai will have Mumbai’s record of five IPL titles in their sights next year. Victory would put them level with their rivals in the all-time tournament wins standings.

Does Warner hold Ashes key for Australia?

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David Warner was tormented by Stuart Broad in the 2019 Ashes series in England, failing to make an impact for Australia, although the 2-2 draw allowed the Baggy Greens to retain the urn. All eyes will be on the 35-year-old in potentially his final series against England in the 2021/22 Ashes on home soil.
The left-hander will be determined to improve his record against the Three Lions by leading a strong effort that sees the Aussies win their third-straight home series over Joe Root and company. Australia are the favorites in the cricket betting odds at 1/3 to win the series, and the strength of their batting unit will be key to a potential victory.

Warner will be hopeful that he has not suffered psychological damage against the Three Lions after suffering at the hands of Broad. In five matches and ten innings against England in 2019, Warner averaged a paltry 9.50 with the bat after scoring only 95 runs across the series. Those figures were bloated by one knock of 61 at Headingley, which ironically came in a defeat for Tim Paine’s men.
Warner failed to progress beyond single figures in eight of his ten innings. His veteran presence and a lack of alternatives has allowed the left-hander remain at fixture at the top of the order for the Baggy Greens. However, he will not want to overstay his welcome if he continues to struggle. Warner has produced a fine career as an opener for the Aussies, although he has never managed to shake the tag of being a flat-track bully. It is evident in his statistics that Warner has relished the flat pacey surfaces in Australia rather than the turning tracks or the seaming wickets of India.

Warner averages an incredible 63.20 at home with 18 centuries and 12 fifties. The 18 centuries make up 75% of his Test match hundreds, including three against England and a sensational 335 not out against Pakistan in 2019 at Adelaide. Warner has had no issues dealing with the Three Lions when on a familiar round, averaging 63 exactly in Australia’s 4-0 win in the 2017/18 series and 58.11 in the 2013/14 whitewash of Alastair Cook’s England side. On both occasions, Warner used his aggression to put the tourists to the sword, tiring out the legs of James Anderson and Broad.
When on tour, Warner has been exposed to the new moving ball. Anderson and Broad are masters of seam and swing in English conditions, resulting in his struggles overseas. The left-hander has bounced back after failing to fire in England at the past to lead Australia back to the urn, but whether he has one more effort in him remains to be seen. Given the uncertainty regarding the rest of their line-up, Australia need Warner at his imperious best in the Ashes. He cannot expose Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith to the new ball, which would hand England a golden opportunity to win their first series Down Under in 11 years. Warner could quietly be the most important player in the series.

This Is How the Big Bash Is Competing with the IPL and Standing Its Ground

There’s no denying the success of the Indian Premier League. With Star India paying $2.55 billion for its current TV rights deal, the IPL is firmly cemented at the top of the T20 tree. Even purists are fearful that the format may overtake Test matches as the king of the sport.

For another twenty over competition to usurp the IPL is almost unthinkable. The Big Bash isn’t doing that per se, but it is holding its ground in the battle of the T20 tournaments. By doing this, it’s paving the way for other nations to take on the IPL in the future. Here’s why.
Embracing Technology
Cricket is a sport full of traditions, so modern twists aren’t often embraced. Merely changing from Tests to T20 games was controversial back in 2008. Well, the Big Bash is taking the strategy to the next level, with interesting results.
The 2020/21 season, for instance, embraced a series of new rules that lit up the action. The most popular was ‘Power Surge, a powerplay regulation that gives the batting team the option to play a two-over period at any point during their innings. ‘Bash Boost’ was another rule that created excitement because it shook up the rankings by awarding a bonus point to the team that scored the most runs after 60 balls. Of course, these introductions also impacted different aspects of the game that supporters love, such as the cricket betting that reveals whether a side has a strong chance of winning a match or the tournament outright. The ‘Bash Boost’ was particularly integral to this since teams could secure points regardless of the outcome of the game, leveling the playing field for the lesser franchises and providing better value for money for bettors and fans.
Simply put, the Big Bash is developing innovative ways to stand out from the crowd, and it’s working as TV figures for the latest version of the competition were the best of any season yet, with 44.82 million tuning in.

Timing the Fixture List Perfectly (IPL – Big Bash)

Going toe to toe with the IPL isn’t a smart move. The Big Bash doesn’t attempt to take on the IPL and win. Instead, it utilizes its strengths to perfection. For example, the event begins in December and finishes at the end of January. As it’s winter in the Northern Hemisphere, there’s barely any cricket taking place, which means there is only one place to go for a dose – the Big Bash.
This dovetails with the format, which isn’t the same as the IPL. Firstly, there are fewer games. The IPL has more than 60 whereas the Big Bash has fewer than 45. Plus, the latter has rest days so that matches aren’t played constantly. Finally, the matches take place in the mornings in Europe and the afternoons in Asia, making them accessible.
The fact that the cricket calendar is bare when the Big Bash begins combined with a less intense structure ensures the fall off during the competition isn’t as considerable, if it happens at all.
Australia’s premier T20 cricket tournament isn’t bigger than the IPL, but it’s maintaining its course. Who knows? In the long term, it may overtake its Indian rival if it leverages the same tactics.

Englands Determination to Reclaim the Ashes

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The 2021 Ashes series starts in December with the preparation for both countries already well underway. England has lost their last two series (against India and New Zealand) and will need to improve in all areas ahead of their trip to Australia.

Who Could Star for England?

The thinking behind England’s squad selection could change many times over the next few months. The upcoming series against India will allow players to stake their claim for a place in the squad. It’s also worth keeping an eye on not only the form of England’s current players but also those in the County Championship. Jake Libby could be an outside bet for a call-up. The Worcestershire batsman started the domestic season in great form and could have captured the attention of England’s selectors.

 

Flashback to 2019

Despite only drawing the series, and ultimately not regaining the Ashes, there were still some great moments from an English perspective. Who could forget that Ben Stokes innings at Headingley? Or how about Jack Leach’s glasses?

 

Australia’s Steve Smith starred throughout that series and played a big part in his country’s retention of the urn. A tense afternoon at Old Trafford resulted in them being guaranteed at least to draw the series. All in all, it was a truly memorable summer with some memorable moments from many of the world’s greatest players. Only a few weeks before the 2019 Ashes, England won the World Cup and beat Australia on their way to glory. Despite this, the current cricket betting odds put Australia as strong favorites to win the series. So, it’s clear that it is all to play for and that it will be a thrilling watch this year.

The Last Time England Won a Series in Australia

The 2010/2011 Ashes was the last time England won a test match down under, never mind the series. That particular tour was the crowning glory of Andrew Strauss’s captaincy. It also saw players like Kevin Pietersen playing at the peak of their powers. Future captain Alastair Cook was the man of the series and also scored the most runs.

In that same series, James Anderson picked up the most wickets with an incredible 24. He is nearing retirement and if he is selected, will be looking to flourish once again. He has taken over 600 wickets now and his experience could still prove to be vital.

Since that incredible series, England has had two pretty disastrous tours of Australia. They lost 5-0 in 2013/2014 and 4-0 in 2017/2018. Can they improve this record and reclaim the iconic urn?