Yes, this year’s WT20 semi finals will showcase a mouth watering clash between The West Indies and India and on the other hand between the unbeaten New Zealand and England. The West Indies and New Zealand were the two dominant sides in this year’s T20 WC. Whereas India and England had to fight hard to reach semi finals.
The West Indies have started their campaign with a comprehensive win over England as a giant called ‘Chirstopher Henry Gayle’ has destroyed the English attack with a 48 ball 100 not out. He smoked 11 sixes in that carnage and English bowlers were being smacked all over the place. But if we look all the four matches, the West Indies have struggled a bit. Against South Africa they somehow managed to cross the line, thanks to the million dollar baby, Carlos Braithwaite and Marlon samules. They were also in a little bit of pressure against the ‘dead’ Sri Lankans. And against Afganistan they have proved that anyone can beat them on any given day if the carribian players are over confident, as they were on the match day. Given all this, The West Indies are still a very tough opponent to beat. All their 15 players are match winners and if Gayle storm arrives, God bless the Indian cricket team.
New Zealand has had the best tournament so far, unbeaten in all 4 super 10s matches. All the victories were convincing. Their pragmatic approach is proving to be extremely effective as they are picking horses for the courses, they see the pitch if its gonna help the spinners they will play Santner, Sodhi and Mccllum. If its pacer friendly Bolt and Southy will come in, so over all they are looking good. Williamson is coming back in form, Anderson is playing okay, Guptill, Munro, etc are contributing as well. In bowling Santner, Sodhi has proved that they belong to the big stage. So, its not going to be a cake walk for England to beat the black caps who are playing with the impetus provided by just retired Brendon Mcllum, and that was play hard but play with a smile on your face.
England is having a mixed campaign, they started on a very hard loss to the Windies. They scored a very good 180+ but what can you do when Gayle wants to have fun. Then they fought like warriors to win against the proties to chase down a mammoth 229, thanks to a Joe Root masterclass. Afganistan gave them a hard time but still could not beat them. And The Lankans tried hard but England were a better side any way. So now in the semi’s they face the Black caps, a hard task but must watch for the viewers.
India started on a horrible note against the kiwi’s in their tournament opener. 79 all out was the most unexpected show by them. But then they fought their way back against their arch rivals, Pakistan. Virat Kohli carried India thorugh on his shoulders once again. Then came the match of the WC against Bangladesh where luck just stood by the Indians. And even Indians couldn’t believe that they have won. Against Australia it was all Virat Kohli show,yes, once again! He single handedly sailed India through the storm. Now they face a bigger challenge against the West Indies. Their bowling needs a little bit of thought, whether Harbhajan or Negi should play or not ? should Rahane replace Dhawan or Yuvi ? all this need a great amount of consideration. It needs a team effort to win a cricket match, Indians should keep this in mind.
So all in all, its going to be a terrific clash between the teams, The West Indies need to be united and in the flow to beat india, Sammy needs to understand that he needs to perform other tasks as well rather than just going and winning tosses. New Zealand needs to continue their good form and need to improve their batting a bit. England need to a bit more aggressive on the field as its no more a gentlemen’s game. And finally India, they need to pick the right eleven for the day and all the players need to take and share responsibilities.
We all will find out what happens on the 30th and 31st of march, but one thing is for sure and that is all the teams will fight like they are fighting for their lives. May the best team win to reach the finals.