Top 5 strikers in ODIs who could lit up the ICC World Cup 2019
With the most celebrated festival of Cricket on the earth approaching to brighten the world with its presence, all the national squads are occupied with finding the best possible combination for the World Cup. Struggling with a suitable blend of playing XI, countries have another stern test ahead with a minor twist in the draw. The proposed format is a round-robin where all the 10 teams will play each other once and top four will directly progress to the knockout stage.
Unlike the rest of the recent World Cups, this longer format would allow teams to freely compete with one another and would also allow some freedom to rectify mistakes made on the way to the top four. Remember, the margin of error varies proportionally when one compete in the World Cup.
One-day cricket has seen a plethora of amendments in the laws since its inception i.e. 1971 and still facing a lot of criticism in the era of T20, where shorter format means runs and just lots of runs. Long gone are the days, when 300 runs on the board was considered to be a safe target.
A blistering start and firework at the end of the innings are all the prerequisites of a significant total or a successful chase. In the age of high-risk cricket, the need for powerful strikers in the team is indispensable. Considering the flatness of the deck in England and longer boundaries, every team shall require a couple of strikers who could send the ball whirling into the crowd.
There will certainly be a few hard hitters of such pedigree on show at the greatest stage of cricket. Five batsmen who are most likely to set ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 on fire are:
(Note: Batsmen selected in the list have played a minimum 40 One-day Internationals).
5. Moeen Ali, England, ODI strike-rate 104.83
Moeen Ali, lean and fit left-hand batting all-rounder, does not carry the tag of a part-time off-spinner anymore. His elegant stroke play is the central feature in England’s limited-overs cricket. Prodigiously talented Moeen has captained England in U-19 World Cup and has also taken the team to semi-finals.
After the failure of Alex Hales at the top of the order, in the initial years of ODI debut, Moeen was given an opportunity and he replied in a fashion. Hitting a 72-ball century at Colombo left the cricketing world awestruck with his natural striking ability. He was then downgraded to the middle order as per the team’s requirement. He provides a much-needed stability and depth in English batting order with Stokes and Buttler.
His graceful batting down the order and skilful off-breaks make him a consistent fixture in the English side. His historical 53-ball ODI century (2nd fastest for England) against West Indies at Bristol showed the significance of having a clean hitter like Ali in the lower middle order.
It would be interesting to see the deadly trio of Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and Moeen Ali in the upcoming World Cup.