'I think he is a fantastic…': Star India cricketer in Mark Waugh's list of Top 5 T20I players ahead of T20 World Cup
Ahead of the T20 World Cup, Mark Waugh shared his list of top five T20I cricketers and included a player from the Indian cricket team.
With the T20 World Cup set to begin in October, Australia legend Mark Waugh shared his list of top five T20I players ahead of the showpiece event. There weren't many surprising inclusions in Waugh's list, as he went on to choose star India pacer Jasprit Bumrah, along with Pakistan's Shaheen Shah Afridi. The other three cricketers who make up the list are Rashid Khan, Jos Buttler and Glenn Maxwell.
Speaking to ICC, Waugh stressed that Bumrah would perform for India in the upcoming tournament. He said, "I think he's a fantastic bowler in all formats, actually. His ability to get wickets in T20 cricket is key. He can bowl at the death and he can bowl up front", he further added.
Regarding Shaheen, who is currently recovering from an injury, the legendary cricketer felt that his teammates follow him as he 'lifts the team'. "To open the bowling at the other end we'll go with another great opening bowler, Shaheen Afridi from Pakistan, who is a tremendous left-arm fast bowler. He's a wicket-taker. He sort of lifts the team. He's a guy that other players follow", he said.
"He is a left-armer so that’s another point of difference. He can swing the ball back into the right-hander, he’s quick as well, so I’ve got him number two."
The 57-year-old praised Rashid for his all-round abilities and pointed out his skill to bowl four overs. "In all competitions he plays in, he’s just the one guy who you know is going to bowl four overs. He’ll probably get two or three wickets and go for 20 runs, and he can bat. He can also whack the ball over the fence", he said.
Calling Buttler the world's 'number one batsman' in T20 cricket, Waugh pointed out the Englishman's ability to strike the ball. "I think he's probably the number one batsman in world cricket in the T20 format. He's just a clean striker of the ball. We've seen him in all tournaments, he just looks on a different level to other players", he said.
Ending his list with Maxwell, Waugh felt the Aussie all-rounder is a match-winner. "Glenn Maxwell is the sort of player that can win you a game in the field and with the bat. With the ball, he's probably underrated. And I think if he bats 30 balls, he'll win you the game. So I think Maxwell, even though he's just not a consistent player, he's that X-factor that can win your game on any given day", he said.