When we hear the term ‘World Cup’, the team which comes first to our mind is that of record world champions Australia. But things are different this time. The Aussie team has its lowest ODI ranking. But this doesn’t mean that facing Australia is not a challenge in the World Cup. The World Cup schedule is based on a round robin format, so there would be ample time for Australia to gain momentum.
Star player David Warner is back and he may be the chief driving force for Australia this time. The left-handed batsmen scored 4343 runs from 106 matches in his ODI career, the highest by any Aussie player playing in this World cup. If Warner retains his form, he might even be able to etch his name into the World cup most runs list.
After Warner, captain Aaron Finch has clocked 4052 runs from 109 matches in his ODI career. This is the second highest runs scored by any Aussie player playing in this World Cup. Hopes would be higher from the captain, looking at the form he showed against India and Pakistan’s ODI series where he scored two centuries and three half-centuries.
Also, top order batsman Usman Khawaja had scored two centuries and five half-centuries in the Indian subcontinent this March. He needs to continue his form if Australia hope to make it through a challenging World Cup schedule. Khawaja’s aggressive batting had lead Australia to win series against India and Pakistan. The left-handed batsmen had made 1238 runs from just 31 matches at an average of 44.21. If this player is unavailable due to injury, it may weaken the top order.
In the absence of this Khawaja, Glenn Maxwell and Steve Smith will have to take charge, and they are a force to be reckoned with. Glenn Maxwell had shown incredible form recently in India and Pakistan tournaments. Though Steve Smith had made 3431 runs from 108 matches with an average of 41.84 in his ODI career, it needs not to be forgotten that he is making his return after serving a year’s ban.
When it comes to the bowling attack, Australia will rely on right arm fast bowler Pat Cummins. His presence in the team will not only help Australia to take wickets but also benefit lower order batting. Pat Cummins had taken from 82 wickets from 48 matches with an economy of 5.18. The spin attack will be lead by the talented Adam Zampa. The leg arm spin bowler picked up 60 wickets from 44 outings in his ODI career. Presence of all-rounder Marcus Stoinis will strengthen the middle order and his medium pace bowling can create problems for right-handed batsmen.
Looking at the Australian team, their chances to win the World Cup look incredible. The presence of David Warner & Aaron Finch provides experience to the team. The bat of Usman Khawaja is ready to hit boundaries. Pat Cummins and Adam Zampa are ready for the bowling attack. And if they can work together, no one can stop Australia from winning their 6th World Cup.