ICC T20 WC, Group A preview: Two Asian arch-rivals placed with three sides aiming to make mark in international cricket | Crickit
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ICC T20 WC, Group A preview: Two Asian arch-rivals placed with three sides aiming to make mark in international cricket

ANI |
May 28, 2024 12:44 PM IST

The group features India, Pakistan, Canada, Ireland and the USA. A total of 20 teams, divided into four groups of five, are battling it out in the T20 WC.

Dubai [UAE], : The Group A teams in the ICC T20 World Cup feature two of the biggest rivals in sport's history and three teams, including the hosts USA, who are out to prove themselves once again on the biggest stage in cricket.

ICC T20 WC, Group A preview: Two Asian arch-rivals placed with three sides aiming to make mark in international cricket
ICC T20 WC, Group A preview: Two Asian arch-rivals placed with three sides aiming to make mark in international cricket

The group features India, Pakistan, Canada, Ireland and the USA. A total of 20 teams, divided into four groups of five, are battling it out in the T20 WC.

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Let us dive into what Group A is offering at the upcoming tournament:

-India

It is yet another tournament for India where they enter with a burning desire to end a streak of near misses at ICC tournaments and secure their first big title since ICC Champions Trophy 2013. Men in Blue field a formidable squad, backed by experienced superstars like Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah and Hardik Pandya. Youngers like Yashasvi Jaiswal, Rishabh Pant, Kuldeep Yadav and Sanju Samson add some audacious energy to the squad.

The top order is extremely strong, featuring Virat, Rohit, Jaiswal and Suryakumar. Wicketkeepers Sanju and Rishabh are both in fine form which they displayed in the recently-concluded IPL 2024 and the all-rounders Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel and Shivam Dube, provide depth and versatility to the squad. Bumrah will lead the pace battery while Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep could be the key spinners.

India takes on Ireland in their tournament opener on June 5 before the epic clash against Pakistan on June 9 in New York.

Squad

Rohit Sharma , Hardik Pandya, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant, Sanju Samson, Shivam Dube, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Arshdeep Singh, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj

Fixtures

vs Ireland - Wed, 5 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs Pakistan - Sun, 9 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs USA - Wed, 12 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs Canada - Sat, 15 June 2024, Florida, 10:30 AM local time

Key Player - Jasprit Bumrah

Bumrah's return serves as a huge boost for India. In their semifinal exit in T20 WC 2022 in Australia, India had suffered a lot due to his absence and the bowling lacked an X Factor. Since his comeback to the national side last year after an injury, Bumrah's form has been sensational, picking up 20 wickets each in the 50-over World Cup last year and the IPL this year for Mumbai Indians. His variety of deliveries, pace, and scorching yorkers will be crucial in deciding how India's campaign moves.

-Pakistan

Pakistan, just like India, have had their share of near misses in T20 WC since years, having reached the semifinals in 2021 and reached the finals of the next one in Australia back in 2022. Skipper Babar Azam is tasked with leading his men out of these heartbreaks and towards the trophy. He will be well supported by experienced stars like Mohammed Rizwan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Fakhar Zaman. Young hard-hitting batter Saim Ayub also adds some power and X Factor to the side despite his inconsistency. The bowling attack has been boosted by the return of all-rounder Imad Wasim and pacer Mohammed Amir. With Shadab Khan, Naseem Shah, Haris Rauf and Abrar Ahmed, Pakistan has a solid pace and spin battery alike.

Pakistan will play co-hosts USA in their opening clash on June 6 before facing off against India in a much-awaited clash on June 9.

Squad

Babar Azam , Abrar Ahmed, Azam Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Abbas Afridi, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Rizwan, Naseem Shah, Saim Ayub, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Khan

Fixtures

vs USA - Thu, 6 June 2024, Texas, 10:30 AM local timevs India - Sun, 9 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs Canada - Tue, 11 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs Ireland - Sun, 16 June 2024, Florida, 10:30 AM local time

Key Player - Babar Azam

It has been a tough few months for Babar, starting with his side's poor 2023 50-over World Cup campaign, where the team could get only four wins in nine games and exited in group stages, that led to his ouster as captain. Later, he was restored as a white-ball captain after the failure of Shaheen Shah Afridi in the New Zealand series this year.

Babar has been consistent as a player, scoring 3,987 runs in 118 matches at an average of over 41 and a strike rate of almost 130. He has taken Pakistan to the knockout stages in the last two T20 WCs as well. Questions have been raised about his strike rate and this tournament would be his chance to silence his critics.

-Ireland

Ireland has earned their eighth consecutive spot in the T20 WC, highlighting their evolution and commendable journey since their days as an associate member of ICC. Instead of Andy Balbirnie who led the country in the last T20 WC, veteran opener Paul Stirling is stepping up as a captain.

The batting features a solid opening pair of Stirling and Balbirnie, supported by exciting talents like Harry Tector, Lorcan Tucker, Ross Adair and Curtis Campher. The pace attack is led by experienced Mark Adair and Josh Little and will be complemented by Graham Hume, Campher, Barry McCarthy and Craig Young. The spin-bowling duties are with the duo of Ben White and Gareth Delany.

Ireland's first game will be against India on June 5 and a win in this match could boost their morale.

Squad

Paul Stirling , Mark Adair, Ross Adair, Andrew Balbirnie, Curtis Campher, Gareth Delany, George Dockrell, Graham Hume, Josh Little, Barry McCarthy, Neil Rock, Harry Tector, Lorcan Tucker, Ben White, Craig Young

Fixtures

vs India - Wed, 5 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs Canada - Fri, 7 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs USA - Fri, 14 June 2024, Florida, 10:30 AM local timevs Pakistan - Sun, 16 June 2024, Florida, 10:30 AM local time

Key Player - Paul Stirling

Stirling has been a pillar of Ireland Cricket since the late 2000s as a player and a leader too. Since 2009, the year of his T20I debut, he has made 3589 runs in 142 matches at an average of 27.60, with a striking rate of 135.43. He is the leading run-getter in T20Is for Ireland and the only player who boasts of 3,000 runs in the format. His explosive batting and partnership with Balbirnie will be crucial in determining how far Ireland goes.

-USA

This tournament is a historic one for the US as it is their maiden appearance at a men's ICC T20 World Cup, having earned their spot as the co-hosts. This is their first major IPL tournament since 2004 when they played the ICC Champions Trophy.

Monank Patel will be the USA's skipper in this campaign and forms the backbone of the batting line-up along with Aaron Jones and Steven Taylor.

The inclusion of former New Zealand all-rounder Corey Anderson shots up depth and experience in the line-up multifolds. The pacer Ali Khan, who has returned from injury, serves as the biggest asset of the team's bowling attack and gets support from Saurabh Netravalkar and Milind Kumar.

USA will kickstart their campaign against neighbours Canada on June 1, aiming to set the stage for a successful tournament with a victory in the opening match.

Squad

Monank Patel , Aaron Jones, Andries Gous, Corey Anderson, Ali Khan, Harmeet Singh, Jessy Singh, Milind Kumar, Nisarg Patel, Nitish Kumar, Noshtush Kenjige, Saurabh Nethralvakar, Shadley Van Schalkwyk, Steven Taylor, Shayan Jahangir

Fixtures

vs Canada - Sat, 1 June 2024, Dallas, 7:30 PM local timevs Pakistan - Thu, 6 June 2024, Texas, 10:30 AM local timevs India - Wed, 12 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs Ireland - Fri, 14 June 2024, Florida, 10:30 AM local time

Key Player - Ali Khan

Ali Khan missed the recent five-match T20I series against Canada due to injury, but returned to star in USA's historic 2-1 series win over Bangladesh, taking four wickets in two games. Ali has travelled the globe as a T20 specialist, having played in the Caribbean Premier League and Pakistan Super League. He burst onto the scene in the USA back in 2015 and his shot to fame was by dismissing Sri Lankan legend Kumar Sangakkara off the very first ball he bowled for Guyana Amazon Warriors in the CPL.

Despite being hit by injuries, Ali has taken nine wickets in eight matches at a fine economy rate of 7.69 and has a lethal yorker in his ammunition.

-Canada

This tournament marks Canada's maiden appearance in the T20 WC, which comes years after playing the 50-over World Cup in 1979, 2003, 2007 and 2011.

The veteran Saad Bin Zafar will be leading a side that features only four players under the age of 30. The returns of pacer Jeremy Gordon and seasoned 39-year-old all-rounder Junaid Siddiqui further add depth to the squad.

Canada start their campaign on June 1 against co-hosts USA in Dallas.

Squad

Saad Bin Zafar , Aaron Johnson, Ravinderpal Singh, Navneet Dhaliwal, Kaleem Sana, Dilon Heyliger, Jeremy Gordon, Nikhil Dutta, Pargat Singh, Nicholas Kirton, Rayyankhan Pathan, Junaid Siddiqui, Dilpreet Bajwa, Shreyas Movva, Rishiv Joshi

Fixtures

vs USA - Sat, 1 June 2024, Dallas, 7:30 PM local timevs Ireland - Fri, 7 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs Pakistan - Tue, 11 June 2024, New York, 10:30 AM local timevs India - Sat, 15 June 2024, Florida, 10:30 AM local time

Key Player - Saad Bin Zafar

Saad is the cornerstone of Canada's success, juggling multiple hats as a captain, batter and bowler. The 37-year-old has played 38 T20Is for the team and the second-most capped player of all time in the format for Canada. He brings a lot of experience with both bat and ball, having scored 272 runs in 19 innings at an average of 22.66 at a strike rate of 133.99 and taken 43 scalps.

This article was generated from an automated news agency feed without modifications to text.

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