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Imam-ul-Haq, Pakistan, India, ICC World Cup 2019
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

ICC World Cup 2019: Imam-ul-Haq Terms India-Pakistan Clash as ‘Huge Pressure Game’

Pakistan’s exciting opener Imam-ul-Haq, who is seen as a serious talent has termed India-Pakistan ICC World Cup 2019 clash as a ‘huge pressure game’.

The southpaw believes there is plenty added to the game between the arch-rivals. Meanwhile, Imam wants to focus on his game.

Following a 41-run loss against Australia at the County Ground Taunton, It would also be a must-win game for Pakistan against the World No. 2 ICC ranked ODI team, India.

India-Pakistan clash is a high-pressure fixture:

Virat Kohli, Sarfraz Ahmed
Kohli alongside Sarfraz. Photo by Gareth Copley-IDI/IDI via Getty Images)

Also, Inzamam-ul-Haq’s nephew Imam, who is eager to create his own identity. He revealed the washed out game against Sri Lanka was important for Pakistan. But, now he has set his focus on the marquee clash against the Men in Blue.

“Yes, we’ve had one game rained off which was very important for us – every game now is very important for us, so yes you can say that,” PTI quoted Imam as saying.

With mother of all matches beginning on this Sunday (June 16) at the Old Trafford in Manchester, Imam is equally excited to be a part of it while adding the fans would back their team. He reiterated that they would want to put behind obscurity in a bid to deliver as per their strength.

“Obviously, to be part of that kind of game, it’s great. It’s in Manchester, lots of Pakistani fans there – so I’m really excited about it. It’s a huge pressure game, obviously. Pakistan and India, there’s a lot of mysteries behind that but we want to just focus on our cricket strengths and how we can get better,” Imam stated.

Pakistan has performed poorly in the ongoing World Cup which subsequently saw them maintaining the eighth spot with just three points in four matches.

Also, Imam has expressed disappointment after admitting the fact that he has failed to make most of the opportunity.

Imam was in good stead before being dismissed on 53 off 75 balls.

The in-form batsman Imam has taken Pakistan out of precarious situation alongside Mohammad Hafeez before throwing away his wicket at the score of 136. Imam chased a down the leg delivery as the ball found a glove on its way before it settled into the gloves of Alex Carey on the bowling of Pat Cummins.

“I knew I’d spent a hell of a lot of time on a tricky wicket. So, I knew it wouldn’t be easy for any new batsman to come in. So it was a huge disappointment because it’s a World Cup stage and if you get set, you really have to make it count if you want to stay in the tournament,” Imam further added.

Imam holds himself responsible:

Photo Credit: Getty Images.

While speaking about his responsibility, Imam maintained he has been playing well. Also, he boasted that the whole team depends on him and Babar Azam. He added he had committed the same mistake on the bowling of Sheldon Cottrell against the Windies.

Also, during the Pakistan-Australia game, Imam’s dismissal opened the floodgates. Pakistan lost three wickets in the space of 15 deliveries. Thus, it didn’t allow Pakistan to make a comeback despite later-order blitz from Hasan Ali and Wahab Riaz.

“Obviously, I’m playing well – and this team depends on me and Babar (Azam). When Babar got out (for 30). It was then my responsibility and I was going well. But it was not a good ball that got me out, the same as I did against the West Indies,” Imam said.

The 23-year-old batsman Imam has produced a spectacular show in the ODI format since 2017. In 31 matches, Imam has amassed 1486 runs at an exceptional average of 57.1. Also, he has six hundreds and as many half-centuries to his name.

The top-order batsman scored 44 against England in Nottingham. Earlier, he managed just two against the Caribbean team in the ongoing World Cup.

Kevin Pietersen, Shoaib Akhtar, ICC World Cup 2019, Pakistan
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

ICC World Cup 2019: Shoaib Akhtar Rues Pakistan’s Loss; Kevin Pietersen Reminds him of Poor Fielding and Bowling

After former Pakistan speedster, Shoaib Akhtar has blamed young opener Imam-ul-Haq’s slow innings for being the main reason to Men in Green’s loss against Australia at the County Cricket Ground in Taunton. However, veteran English batsman Kevin Pietersen reminds the Rawalpindi Express that they struggled to field and bowl well against Australia.

Except for Mohammad Amir, Pakistan bowlers have had received a beating on a used surface as they failed to make most of the opportunity early on owing to overcast conditions. Pertinently, Sarfraz Ahmed-led Pakistan faltered in the field and couldn’t do much with the ball too.

Pakistan’s only highlight came in the form of Amir, who has bagged his first five-wicket haul in the ODI format. Amir has conceded just 30 runs in his quota of 10 overs. For most of the time, Amir had bowled with precision. The left-arm pacer stemmed the run flow when Australian batters were going at a great pace.

On the other side, the other bowlers were erratic, which allowed Aussies openers to post 146 runs for the opening stand.

However, they made a strong comeback to restrict Australia at 307 runs in 49 overs.

In response, Pakistan batsmen struggled in the middle overs. Thus, Aussies bowlers bowled out Pakistan at 266 in 45.4 overs. At one stage Pakistan were 136 for two in 25 overs before the collapse handed them a 41-run loss in their fourth World Cup match.

Photo Credit: ICC.

The star bowler Akhtar took to his Twitter handle while questioning left-handed batsman Imam over his scoring rate.

Imam consumed 75 deliveries for his 53 runs which, according to Akhtar, has mounted pressure on the team.

“I have always raised concerns over Imam’s strike rate. Scored 53 off 75 balls, put the whole team under pressure. Hence, the crumbling. Sigh,” Akhtar wrote.

Pietersen took no time in questioning Pakistan’s fielding and bowling.

While talking about Pakistan’s poor show, a couple of drop catches from Asif Ali has added to miseries of Pakistan which eventually summed up their lousy day as overthrows further added to the frustration.

The Men in Green are at the bottom half of the table. They’ve lost two matches in four so far.

In their fifth match, Pakistan will take on arch-rivals India at the Old Trafford in Manchester on June 16. So, it remains to be seen how the team would learn from their past mistakes.

England vs Windies, Windies Predicted Playing XI, ICC World Cup 2019

ICC World Cup 2019: England vs Windies, Rose Bowl — Windies’ Predicted Playing XI

In the game number 19 of the ICC World Cup 2019, England will wrestle with unpredictable Windies which offers a lot for the fans of both the teams. Well, England vs Windies match could spring a surprise or so given to the ability of Windies camp. Ahead of the Windies’ predicted playing XI, there is plenty to talk about.

Furthermore, Eoin Morgan-led side won’t show any complacency against the Caribbean team after losing a game to Pakistan by 14 runs.

Well, the Three Lions have maintained the third spot with two wins in three games. Whereas, Windies are listed sixth with a solitary win in three matches.

Moreover, Windies’ previous game against South Africa ended up on distributing a point each due to bad weather.

Overall, it’s going to be an exciting contest.

Here’s Windies’ predicted playing XI for the ICC World Cup 2019 clash against England:

Chris Gayle:

Chris Gayle
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Chris Gayle, who is known for playing an effortless strokes, will hold a key for the Windies in a bid to dominate English bowlers. Gayle, who takes his time to began for his onslaught, poses a threat for any of the top-notch team on his day.

Evin Lewis:

Evin Lewis
Photo Credit: AFP.

The stroke-maker in the form of Evin Lewis is following the footsteps of his senior opening partner, Gayle. Lewis might have had struggled, but he could be an X-factor.

Lewis has a knack of going after the bowlers early on which could boost the middle-order batsmen.

Shai Hope:

Shai Hope
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

The talented cricketer Shai Hope brings in a lot of hope for the Caribbean team in the quadrennial event. He is in good stead following a good knock against Australia.

The top-order batsman is capable of playing long innings, which could eventually help his team to post a good total or provide impetus in pursuit of chasing a target.

Nicolas Pooran:

Nicolas Pooran
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

The wicketkeeper-batsman Nicolas Pooran has a reasonable conversion rate.

Moreover, in the middle-order line-up, he brings in a lot of variety given to his ability to rotate the strike-rate and subsequently to change the gear in a bid to put pressure on the opposition.

Pooran is patient enough to deliver according to the circumstances.

Shimron Hetmyer:

Shimron Hetmyer
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Shimron Hetmyer is another prospect who charges against the bowlers. Hetmyer might have been unfortunate while finding himself short of his crease against Australia, but he is a quick learner of the game.

All in all, Hetmyer would want to deliver for his team.

Jason Holder:

Jason Holder, ICC World Cup 2019
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Jason Holder has done an outstanding job for the Windies team in the recent past. Known for his hitting prowess, Holder has also done a fair job with a ball in his hand.

Also Read : ICC World Cup 2019: Match 19, England vs Windies – England’s Predicted Playing XI

After playing his captain’s knock against Australia, Holder would be keen to contribute in the middle-overs apart from marshalling his troops.

Andre Russell:

Andre Russell
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Andre Russell is a kind of batsman who could change the course of the game in a couple of overs.

Remarkable on the field, Russell is equally good with the ball. The three-dimensional player like Russell adds plenty to the team.

Russell is a player to watch out for the Windies against top-notch England.

Carlos Brathwaite:

Carlos Brathwaite
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Carlos Brathwaite who had a mixed show in the recent past. He needs to back his strength to deliver for the team’s cause. Known for playing cameos, Brathwaite could further play a major role with his medium pace bowling.

Brathwaite would want to excel in a much-awaited clash.

Ashley Nurse:

Ashley Nurse
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

The 30-year-old off-spinner Ashley Nurse is shouldering the responsibility in the spin department. The experienced campaigner has a chance to improve his average who has so far bagged 49 wickets in 53 ODIs since 2016.

The wily customer Nurse could trouble English batters with his variety.

Sheldon Cottrell:

Sheldon Cottrell, Trevor Bayliss, Salute, ICC World Cup 2019, England
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

So far, in three matches, the Jamaican-born medium pacer Sheldon Cottrell has bagged five wickets. The left-arm pacer would want to generate the angle to challenge England’s explosive openers.

However, he has been creating a buzz with his Sheldon salute.

Oshane Thomas:

Oshane Thomas
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

In his short international stint, Oshane Thomas has impressed one and all.

The 22-year-old pacer has peppered Pakistan with short-pitch stuff in Nottingham, before bagging two wickets against Australia at the same venue.

Thomas has made good use of English conditions, and he will hold a key for the Windies with the new ball.

Sheldon Cottrell, England, Trevor Bayliss, ICC World Cup 2019
Windies bowler Sheldon Cottrell salutes after taking a wicket. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

ICC World Cup 2019: Sheldon Cottrell’s Salute Frustrates England Coach, Trevor Bayliss

Windies fast bowler Sheldon Cottrell has been in the news for so long, but for his unique way of celebrating a dismissal. With his trademark wicket-taking celebration has already won hearts, England coach, Trevor Bayliss holds a different perception. In the ongoing ICC World Cup, Cottrell’s has created a buzz while walking a couple of paces before performing a ‘Sheldon Salute’.

The English chief coach Bayliss maintained that the signature celebration is pretty annoying, which leaves him frustrated at times.

Bayliss might not be a fan of Cottrell’s celebration, but he has already admitted the fact that the Caribbean bowler has produced some outstanding results with his brilliant display of bowling in the top-flight cricket.

While speaking to ESPN Cricinfo, Bayliss maintained it’s disturbing. Meanwhile, hosts England are set to face the Windies on Friday.

“If you’re older than about 40-years-old it p—– you off,” Bayliss said.

However, he reiterated that it’s their way of celebrating the wicket. He added many don’t like the way England bowlers celebrate after dismissing a batsman. While terming the celebration as an ‘entertainment, Bayliss agreed that it brings a lot of joy to many in one way or another.

“But every team has their way of celebrating and I’m sure other teams might not like the way we celebrate. In the end, it’s a young man’s game. It’s all entertainment. If it gets a bit of a laugh or a smile on people’s faces so be it,” Bayliss elaborated.

How Cottrell celebrates a wicket?

Sheldon Cottrell, Trevor Bayliss, Salute, ICC World Cup 2019, England
Cottrell has troubled the batters. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Cottrell, who hardly laughs, opts for a short march to set himself up for a famous salute. However, it becomes pertinent that he has represented the Jamaican Defence Force before breaking into the top-flight Cricket.

The promising bowler has trained himself hard, which further saw him training for at least six months in the defence training centre.

“I do it every time I get a wicket. I practised it for six months when I trained in the army,” Cottrell revealed to the BBC in his interview in the past.

In the recent past, Cottrell has decided to pay tribute to his colleagues. So, he made up his mind for a military-style salute after dismissing a batsman.

In short, Sheldon often does things in his own way.

While clearing the air when many questioned his celebration, Cottrell, who is adamant in approach, has called himself a professional ‘soldier’. He added he does it to express his gratitude to his comrades and countrymen.

“It’s a military-style salute. I’m a soldier by profession. Me saluting is just to show my respect to the Jamaica Defence Force,” he concluded.

So far, the 29-year-old left-arm pacer Cottrell has bagged five wickets in three World Cup matches.

David Warner, ICC World Cup, Australian Fan, Memento, Taunton
Young Australia fan receives a memento from Warner. Photo Credit: Cricket World Cup/Twitter.

ICC World Cup 2019: David Warner Gifts his Memento to Young Australian Fan in Taunton

Following a splendid ICC World Cup 2019 hundred from David Warner, his second in the quadrennial event, saw him winning the hearts across the cricketing globe after a heartwarming gesture.

The explosive opener has slammed a fine ton against Pakistan at the County Ground in Taunton. It eventually helped Australia to win the game by 41 runs following a superb show from Australians with the ball, too. The Player of the Match, Warner, has gifted his award to Australia’s young fan. Warner has thanked the crowd before meeting his die-hard fan who beamed a smile in the stands.

Warner responds critics in his own trademark celebration:

David Warner, ICC World Cup 2019
Entertaining Warner is in red-hot form. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

On Wednesday (June 12), Sarfraz Ahmed put Australia to bat first, but Aussie openers including Aaron Finch stitched a crucial 146-run stand for the first wicket. However, Warner went on to slam 111-ball 107 which included 11 fours and a six.

Earlier, during India vs Australia game at The Oval on Sunday (June 09) Warner alongside Steven Smith were booed before Virat Kohli asked fans to cheer for Smith in Particular.

However, the reports suggested Warner and Smith didn’t face wrath from Pakistani fans. The fans from Pakistan outnumbered Australians at the Taunton Stadium.

Soon after the post-match presentation ceremony, Warner, who earned the Man of the Match award by receiving a memento, has further gifted his award to young Australian fan.

The pumped up fan has cheered for the Kangaroos in the stands. Warner, who wore a smile before giving an autograph to Australian youngster. The young fan has further expressed satisfaction after Warner acknowledged her efforts.

Zainab catches up with Warner’s fan:

Well, the Cricket World Cup Twitter handle has termed Warner’s effort as a “wonderful gesture”. While talking to Zainab Abbas, who is a part of ICC’s digital insider, the young fan has expressed joy in receiving a gift from a favourite player like Warner.

“We were waving out the flag as he was passing by and he just came over. I really like him,” the young Aussie fan maintained.

Earlier, batting first, Australia were bowled out for 307 following a solid comeback from Pakistan. However, Pakistan batters faltered in the middle-overs which eventually saw the Men in Green folding out at 266 despite some late-order blitz from Wahab Riaz and Hasan Ali respectively.

With the latest win, Australia has bagged six points in four games. Whereas, Pakistan is placed in the bottom half of the table with just three points in four matches.

Watch: David Warner Gives Away Player of the Match Award to Australian Fan –

Kapil Dev, BCCI,
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

ICC World Cup 2019: Kapil Dev Wants Hardik Pandya to be Himself

The 1983 World Cup-winning skipper Kapil Dev has urged all-rounder Hardik Pandya to improve his bowling trait. He added, he is keen to see Pandya doing better than him at the highest-level cricket for the Team India. Pandya, who is the part of ICC World Cup 2019, has had shown early glimpse with the bat, but he couldn’t do much with the ball, of late.

Legendary all-rounder Dev didn’t want to witness Pandya emerging as a shining light for India.

While responding to a question on his comparison with Pandya, Dev maintained the latter is a batting all-rounder. He has hailed Pandya for being in a good spirit while adding it’s quite important for his team.

All in all, Dev wants Pandya to be himself.

Hardik Pandya,
Pandya needs to prove his mettle with the ball. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

“Let’s not compare, let him play. We have already seen his rich talent and I want him to be better than me. He is an all-rounder, he has to perform in both the departments. Yes, he is a batting all-rounder I can feel that, so I hope he can improve in his bowling. He is a great team man and that is more important,” Dev told PTI.

While avoiding the comparison, Dev believes the Baroda-based talented all-rounder shall work on his bowling skills.

Earlier, many including cricketing pundits have drawn a comparison of Pandya with legendary Dev, who proved to be an influential character for the new generation.

Over the years, Pandya has improved leaps and bounds. Since making his debut way back in January 2016, Pandya’s growth has set an example for many youngsters who are waiting in the wings.

Following his occasional failures, but has also set stadiums on fire while playing some breathtaking knocks. He has been a nemesis for the spinners.

In 47 ODIs, Pandya has scored 794 runs at an average of 30.53. Also, he has amassed 532 runs in 11 Tests which included a Test ton. He has scored runs at 31.3.

Moreover, it becomes pertinent to point out that he has struggled with his bowling average in the day-long format. The right-arm medium-pacer has bagged 44 wickets, with his average (41.97) on the higher side.

Meanwhile, Pandya has a chance to improve his bowling numbers when India takes on New Zealand on Thursday (June 13) in Nottingham.

ICC World Cup 2019
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

ICC World Cup 2019: India vs New Zealand, Trent Bridge — New Zealand’s Predicted Playing XI

Despite New Zealand topping the points table of the ongoing ICC World Cup 2019, Kane Williamson-led side won’t be settling down before taking on World No. 2 ODI team, India at the Trent Bridge in Nottingham on June 13 (Thursday).

So far, the Kiwis have played some competitive cricket apart from showing responsibility to deliver according to a situation. On the other side, India has been remarkable in its approach under the dynamic leadership of Virat Kohli.

The Men in Blue’s bowlers have breathed down the neck of the opponent’s batters.

Overall, it’s going to be an exciting clash between the heavy-weights of the game.

Here’s New Zealand’s predicted playing XI for India game of the ICC World Cup 2019:

Martin Guptill:

Martin Guptill, ICC World Cup 2019, England
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Explosive opener Martin Guptill might have faced a first-ball duck against Afghanistan. But he could equally be threatening on his day. The experienced campaigner has all his shots in his book to lay a solid foundation for the Black Caps.

Colin Munro:

Colin Munro, New Zealand
Photo Credit: AFP.

Colin Munro would want to produce an outstanding show against top-quality Team India bowling line-up. Also, Munro has the knack of playing aggressive shots early on which could emerge as a make or break situation for the Kiwis.

Also Read : ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 (Match 18): India vs New Zealand – Stats Preview

Munro is keen to play a much-winning knock for his team.

Kane Williamson:

Kane Williamson
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Kiwis star batsman and leader Kane Williamson hold an important position in New Zealand’s playing XI. The top-order batsman is in some form which further saw him scoring 99-ball 79 against Afghanistan.

Williamson is known for bringing stability in the playing XI.

Ross Taylor:

Ross Taylor,
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Ross Taylor has been an old serving guarding for the Black Caps. While having a wealth of experience on his back, Taylor has a knack of playing a marathon of innings.

Taylor’s batting show will be necessary for Kiwis against India on a feather bed.

Tom Latham:

Tom Latham, New Zealand, Kane Williamson, Cricket World Cup
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

The wicketkeeper-batsman Tom Latham is a versatile cricketer who could also bat at the top. Latham is known for changing his gears. Latham is capable of scoring at the brisk pace. He is also useful against spinners.

Also Read : ICC World Cup 2019: Match 18, India vs New Zealand – India’s Predicted Playing XI

Jimmy Neesham:

Jimmy Neesham
Photo by Simon West/Action Plus via Getty Images)

Jimmy Neesham, who could generate a good speed, has been outstanding against Afghanistan, The five-wicket haul against Afghanistan has boosted is morale. Neesham is also capable of playing a whirlwind knock.

Also, having the ability to bowl well-disguised slower one, Neesham would be a bowler to watch out for.

Colin de Grandhomme:

Colin de Grandhomme
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Colin de Grandhomme is known for his influential role with the bat and ball. The aggressive batsman has the knack of dispatching the balls into the stands. Also, he is handy with his cutters and could trouble batters in the middle overs.

Mitchell Santner:

Vijay Shankar
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Surprisingly, at the Country Ground in Taunton, Mitchell Santner didn’t deliver a single delivery. Meanwhile, Williamson has used as many as five bowlers.

Santner has a bagful of trick to challenge India batters. But at the same time, the Men in Blue have a good record against spin attack. So, things won’t be easy for Santner altogether.

Matt Henry:

Matt Henry
(Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)

Matt Henry is the second leading wicket-taker for the Kiwis. The 27-year-old Christchurch-born has bagged seven wickets in first two games before going wicketless in their third game against Afghanistan.

Lockie Ferguson:

Lockie Ferguson, India, World Cup 2019, New Zealand,
(Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

Lockie Ferguson, who is known for his sheer pace two, could continue in Kiwis’ playing XI. The fast bowler has managed to bag four wickets in his previous game.

Ferguson is capable of picking wickets at the earliest. He is the leading wicket-taker of the ICC World Cup 2019 with eight wickets to his name.

Trent Boult:

Trent Boult
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Trent Boult might have gone wicketless, but he has experience on his side to bamboozle any of the star-studded line-ups. Boult, who could clock at 150, further is known for making good use of slower.

Boult has closely followed Team India players, so he has got a fair idea on how to bowl against in-form batsmen.

ICC World Cup 2019, Scenarios, England
Inclement weather has trouble different team at the World Cup. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

ICC World Cup 2019: Scenarios If Semifinal and Finale Get Washed Out in England

In the ongoing ICC World Cup 2019, the inclement weather has remained a highlight. Well, in the twelfth edition of the tournament as many as three matches were abandoned due to bad weather in England and Wales. Consequently, it has become a record in the quadrennial event.

Well, back in 1992 and 2003 at least two games each were washed out due to the rain. But, in 2019, things look pretty miserable. So much so, the inclement weather has left players and support staff frustrated following a remarkable start to the 45-odd day tourney on May 30 when England thump South Africa by 104 runs at the Kennington Oval.

With the ICC event losing its sheen, the weather forecast is not equally ideal for a couple of matches. However, most of the games won’t witness any halt due to bad weather.

Well, the quandary for the teams which could be understood with the statement of Bangladesh head coach Steve Rhodes.

“We put men on the moon so why can’t we have a reserve day, when actually this tournament is a long tournament?” he revealed it to media in England.

So, we are here for the scenarios if the semifinal clash and finale will get washed out in the time to come. Although, there are fewer chances to witness the mega games being marred by bad weather.

While considering the forecast for the upcoming fixtures, it isn’t that good either. Moreover, many believe that they don’t have good vibes for the World Cup.

On the other side, the abandoned games are hurting teams most often, which force them to lose two crucial points in the early stages of the ODI showpiece.

Also, in the recent past rain has spoiled the party of teams before being shown an exit door in the major tourneys.

ICC World Cup, England, Scenario
ICC World Cup 2019 has been marred by inclement weather. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Let’s have a look at the rules if the rain would mar the important fixtures of the World Cup.

With rain threat looming large in the ongoing tourney, a lot is there to be feared for fans and teams respectively because there’s no policy for reserve days owing to the league stage games.

However, the semifinals and grand-finale could be held on reserve days as well if the scheduled day is marred by inclement weather. Well, which will eventually serve as a sigh of relief for many.

There’s a possibility the teams might end up with same points on the points table following the culmination of league stage fixtures.

However, the winner is expected to be decided based on net run-rate, the number of victories, head-to-head result and ranking ahead of the tourney.

Interestingly, Super Over could also be introduced in the semis and finale if the game ends up in a tie. But a point will be given each to the teams if the same will take place in the league stage encounters.

Well, if the semifinal will be marred due to bad weather, the team which has done exceedingly well and is ranked higher in the league stage will automatically qualify for the finale.

Also, if the rain will disrupt the final even on the reserved day, the finalists will share the coveted World Cup trophy.

Kagiso Rabada, ICC World Cup 2019, South Africa
Photo Credit: Getty Images

ICC World Cup 2019: I Started Playing Cricket Because I Liked to Play Sport – Kagiso Rabada

South African speedster Kagiso Rabada, who is bowling his heart out, is concurrently partaking in the ongoing ICC World Cup 2019, has remarked that using black as an excuse shouldn’t push the management to gift opportunities in the name of quota. He believes the right way is to provide opportunities according to the merit.

The right-arm paceman has recently featured in the ICC World Cup 2019 opener against England in which he bagged two wickets. But, his side loses their opener by 104 runs at Kennington Oval in London on Thursday (May 30.)

Rabada on transformation:

Kagiso Rabada, South Africa, World Cup 2019,
Rabada keen to deliver. Photo Credit: AFP.

Earlier, Cricket South Africa (CSA) has set the procedure of having black and white players in the playing XI across formats. However, it doesn’t apply at the quadrennial event. Thus, it eventually excites Rabada, who reiterated the players shall be introduced solely based on their performances.

“For me, transformation is all about getting an opportunity. I feel that players or people should be given the opportunity as much as possible. At a professional level, players should be picked on merit,” Rabada told ESPNcricinfo in an interview.


With time, players like Rabada and Lungi Ngidi have had fought well to make their way into the playing XI which correctly sits well with 24-year-old pacer in terms of a transformation.

“You are seen as a beacon of hope in terms of transformation and all of that. People try and justify transformation by using players like us, using players like Lungi,” Rabada added.

Meanwhile, Rabada himself has emerged as a prominent face of the Proteas cricket. Over the years, the pace sensation has done an outstanding job for his team while picking wickets at regular intervals.

Rabada, who opted for an apolitical approach, maintained his entire focus in on his game he has loved the most.

The exciting paceman Rabada, who generated interest in cricket during his school days, conceded he had set high hopes to represent his country. However, over the years, Rabada has improved leaps and bounds to become the world’s one of the finest fast bowlers.

“I started playing cricket because I liked to play sport. I started doing well in cricket when I was in school. All I wanted to do from then on was to just keep improving and, hopefully, one day represent my country,” Rabada further added.

Rabada believes in an opportunity:

Kagiso Rabada
Rabada is an integral part of the Proteas team. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

So much so, he will provide opportunities to the youngsters at his foundation, which eventually justifies how Rabada as a professional sees at a game.

Rabada, who believes in a fair process, has urged the concerned authorities for providing opportunities to the players. He also admitted the fact that the system was pretty unfair to the particular community.

“I believe in opportunity. You have to give the opportunity. From there players should get picked fairly. For instance, I’ve got a foundation coming up – the Kagiso Rabada Foundation. Right now it should be fair, but just because you are black you should not be gifted opportunities,” Rabada concluded.

Since making his debut in 2015, Rabada has featured in 67 ODIs. He has scalped 108 wickets at an average of 26.6.

Yuvraj Singh, Kevin Pietersen
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

ICC World Cup 2019: Kevin Pieterson Names India and New England as Favourites

The 12th edition of the ICC World Cup 2019 has begun at the Kennington Oval in England. The hosts England has claimed their first win of the tournament against South Africa. Well, either of the teams has not won a single title yet and will be seeking to use this opportunity judiciously. Ahead of the tournament, Kevin Pieterson has picked his favourites to win the trophy. Former England has picked India and transformed England as his favourites of the premier event.

Almost every one of the critics in cricket has picked England, India and Australia as their favourites for the gala event. Australia has suddenly risen as the threatening side shortly after the arrival of David Warner and Steven Smith.

However, India and England have played some good games in the past few months. Reformed England looks stronger than ever having won 17 of the 22 ODI matches played.

Meanwhile, India has defeated South Africa, Australia and New Zealand away from home. However, doubts were seeded after their defeat against New Zealand in the first warm-up game. But India seemingly remained unfazed by the loss and won the second practice match against Bangladesh by 95 runs.

Kevin Pieterson reveals his favourites for the ICC World Cup 2019:

India, England, Pieterson, World Cup 2019, Kevin Pieterson,

A former right-handed batsman of England has picked India and reformed England as most likely to win the title trophy this time. He praised both the sides and felt happy with the way English cricket has changed.

Pieterson, who had a love-hate relationship with English Cricket Board (ECB), said its satisfying to see the change in the England players.

“Eoin Morgan has transformed them. I’m not surprised because I was sat on a train with him years ago, talking about the way we need to play positive cricket,” said Pieterson.

Apart from India and England, Pieterson pinned Australia as the dark horse while calling Windies as unpredictable in the tournament.

“India and England are probably the favourites. But the dark horses are Australia and the unpredictables are West Indies.” Pietersen said.

Pieterson believes in the present skipper of England, Eoin Morgan to lead the team in the right direction. And seems happy about the game plan being used by the team in international cricket.