India won the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007Exactly 6 months from now, one of the most popular events in the cricketing world will start in India. It is the 6th edition of the ICC World T20. A nation which loves cricket like none other makes the tournament all the more exciting.The qualifying tournament has been done and dusted and now we have got all the 16 participants. This one is going to be one heck of an event. It promises to be an action packed 24 days of breathtaking force.By this time, every team has started taking the World T20 into consideration, with the teams having scheduled a few T20 games in their upcoming tours.Here is a look at the top 5 contenders to lift the trophy in 2016.
Australia hasn’t had a very fruitful time in the World T20s so far. The 5 time ODI world champions are still waiting for their first T20 title. They managed to get into the final once in 2010 in but they were defeated comprehensively by an England side led by Paul Collingwood. In the last edition in 2014, Australia had a horrible time winning a solitary game out of 4 matches and that too against Bangladesh and were knocked out in the first round itself.
But that is all history now. Come 2016, it could be their best chance to lift the trophy as they have a fairly young squad. Led by a new captain in Steve Smith, they will be hoping to turn the tables with the title of the ODI world champions on their side.
With so many power hitters like David Warner, Shane Watson, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Marsh and Matthew Wade, Australia is capable of scoring big runs and achieving any target. Batting is their main strength. In the bowling department, they have Mitchell Starc who demolishes the batting on his day while Nathan Coulter-Nile has emerged as a decent T20 bowler too.
The weak link will be the spin department as Australia doesn’t seem to have a spinner who is consistent enough. Because the conditions will be spin-friendly, they need to look for quality spinners. While teams like India have gone in with 3 spinners in the past to make most of the conditions, Australia will certainly need Maxwell to work on his bowling and give them the full quota of overs.
The biggest challenge that Australia will face is the capability of the batsmen against the turning ball. The last two tournaments were played in the subcontinent and the batsmen had a pretty tough time against the spinners.
Where Australia has the advantage is that their big guns have been playing in the IPL for a long time. The conditions won’t be new for them as they spend 2 months every year in India during the IPL. They all have played enough and done well to be familiar with what the Indian pitches on offer. If only Australia could strengthen their spin unit, we might well witness a new champion at the World T20s.