CWC 2019: Predicting the teams' positions on the points table
The grandest and biggest spectacle in cricket is just a month away and 10 teams are all set to battle it out in England. It doesn't get bigger than this in the Gentlemen's game, and teams have been working hard for this tournament since 2015. This will be the first World Cup in which associate countries won't be a part of.
While England qualified for the World Cup as hosts, seven other teams qualified based on their rankings on the ICC ODI rankings. West Indies and Afghanistan qualified after playing the Qualifying tournament in Zimbabwe. The format for this year's World Cup has changed completely from the one in 2015.
The group stage will be played in round-robin format, where all teams will play once against each other. The top 4 teams will qualify for the semi-finals, where the 1st placed team will play against the 4th placed team. In the other semi-final, the 2nd and 3rd placed teams will square off. The winner of both the semi-finals will square off in the final at the prestigious Lord's Cricket Ground.
All teams will be eyeing a top 4 finish, but not all of them can achieve it. On that note, let us have a look at the predicted postions of the teams for the World Cup.
#10 Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka will enter the tournament as the weakest team on paper. They don't have a single player of whom the opposition will fear. Lasith Malinga is no longer the same bowler and the likes of Thisara Perera and Angelo Mathews haven't been as consistent as they would have liked.
Their captain, Dimuth Karunaratne hasn't played a single ODI since 2015 and his selection in the squad is a big talking point in itself. He has an average of 15 in ODI cricket and has a dismal strike rate of 68.84. Lahiru Thirimanne hasn't played an ODI for 15 months and even he has been selected. He has a strike rate of 71 and such strike rates won't help in England.
On the whole, their squad looks really weak and there is no X-Factor in their squad and at this point, it is difficult to see them finish above 10th place.