Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Here comes another World Cup

Even before I realise, four years have passed and another world cup is round the corner. It feels like yesterday that the Indian team threw away their chances against Bangladesh and the Paki's lost to Ireland. Bob Woolmer died. At a venue where one wanted to witness an India-Pak clash, one had to be content with a Ireland-Bangladesh ODI.

Four years have passed in a flash and lots has changed. Aussies are no longer the invincible unit that they have been for more than a decade now. England are no mere pushovers. They are the reigning T20 champions. Kiwi's were beaten in 10 consecutive ODI's in the subcontinent. The Paki's have been in middle of all controversies. In particular, the spot-fixing. Even they are not able to choose their captain. Exception to the long list of changes is the little master Sachin Tendulkar. He graduated from the little baby of the Indian cricket team in the 1992 edition to the kaku(uncle) of most players in the 2011 edition. His passion has been the same for this many years and it is the best opportunity for him to be a part of the world cup winning team.

This world cup does promise to be a tournament filled with surprises. As far as I am concerned, the format is not the perfect one. First of all, both the groups have 4 top teams and 4 minnows. It is highly likely that the 4 top teams will make it to the quarter finals. After that, anybody who can win 3 in a row will lift the cup. The previous editions of the world cup(outside the subcontinent) valued consistency. Atleast the 1999/2003 editions where the super6's gave chance to the teams with a poor start to comeback. At the same time, those editions were helped the consistent teams qualify for the semi-finals. 2007 was a big drag with the super 8s.

Though there is a grey area in the system, it gives a dark horse a chance to turn the tables. All the sub-continent teams that won the world cup did so as dark horses. I truly hope it is a tournament filled with surprises and a tournament where some great cricket is played and where a new world order is set.

Will the aussies rise from ashes (ashes debacle)like they did last time after a 3-0 whitewash by the kiwis in 2007? Will the men in blue live upto their favourites tag? Will the Englishmen take their ashes form into the WC? Will the Proteas lift their tag of chokers? Will their be another surprise? Not easy to tell. All I can hope for is a well faught world cup and may the best team win. Hopefully it is the men in blue. Whatsay?

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