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5 Batsmen Who'll Be Seen Fighting For Top Batting Honours At The ICC World Cup 2019

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Arguably one of the biggest sporting events in the world, the 12th edition of the ICC World Cup is set to enthrall cricket enthusiasts when it kickstarts from 30th May, pitting the likes of hosts England and exciting South Africa against each other. Over a span of 45 days and across 48 scintillating contests, the ICC mega event is expected to bring the best of the participating nations in what promises to be an exciting affair.

But, the World Cup isn't just about winning the coveted trophy. In fact, cricket's biggest tournament has a history of bringing exciting contests, fiery duels and individual brilliances to the fore. And, this year promises to be no different.

From the top wicket-takers to leading run-scorers, the upcoming ICC tournament has had the cricket fans wondering who'd claim the top honours in individual performances. While we will discuss the wicket-taking heroes in another article, let's discuss the probables for the batting honours this year.

When it comes to scoring most runs in the World Cups, no one comes close to the legendary Sachin Tendulkar who scored 2,278 runs across six tournaments he played. Though Tendulkar's record will take some doing, but the current batting geniuses of the game will surely be eager to make a mark at the biggest stage.

Going purely by numbers, here's a look at five batsmen who might be seen ruling the charts in the list of leading run-getters at the World Cup this year.

Virat Kohli

Undeniably one of best batsmen in the world right now, Virat Kohli will be the key to India's charge at this year's World Cup. The Indian captain needs no introduction to batting and the fact that, at the age of 30, he has already slammed 41 ODI hundreds - only behind Tendulkar's tally of 49 tons, shows how special and consistent this lad is.

But, that's not all. Kohli is going into the World Cup with a formidable form and, for someone who takes a special liking to big events, he is surely expected to reign supreme in England and Wales. To back that claim with numbers, Kohli has scored 4,306 runs at an average of 78.29 - most by any batsmen in ODIs since the World Cup in 2015.

While it's really hard to predict whether he'll actually emerge as the leading run-scorer at the upcoming event, the numbers surely tip him as one of the favourites. And, given his artistry with the willow, we might end up seeing a Kohli special this year.

Rohit Sharma

One of the most devastating openers in limited-overs cricket, Rohit Sharma, having begun his career as a middle-order batsman, found his true calling at the top of the order. A preferred opener by the Indian team management, Rohit has made the opening spot his own on the back of spectacular performances in white-ball cricket.

His malleable wrists and knack to find the gaps have all added to his batting masterclass which continues to evolve over the years. Just like his skipper Kohli, Rohit will also be one of the vital cogs in India's dreams of lifting their third World Cup trophy this year. Since the 2015 edition of the World Cup, Rohit has amassed 3,790 ODI runs at an average of 61.12 - only behind Kohli in the elite list.

His last stint in England saw him smashing an unbeaten 137 in the first ODI in Nottingham - something that should bolster his confidence going into the World Cup. The right-handed batsman is coming off a title-winning season with Mumbai Indians who lifted a record fourth IPL trophy this season. While there is no doubt over Rohit's abilities, the Indian opener will need convert his starts into big figures if he intends to challenge other batsmen for the top batting honours at the World Cup.

Joe Root

For someone who was tipped as a future England captain at the age of 23, Joe Root has not only lived up to the billing, but has also successfully managed to rally his troops in the build-up to the World Cup at home. Rated amongst the top batsmen in the world, Root, on his day, is more than capable of running away with the game.

At this year's World Cup, Root will surely be a key player, providing the much-needed stability to their batting line-up. If playing at home doesn't strengthen his case, the fact that Root has slammed 3,498 runs at an average of 58.30 in ODIs (since the 2015 World Cup) further makes a probable candidate for the top batting honours in the upcoming event.

The right-handed batsman will be seen leading England's charge at the ICC spectacle, but while his leadership skills will be put to test, Root's batting might cannot be questioned.

Eoin Morgan

One of the batting mainstays for England over the years, Eoin Morgan will once again be seen stabilising the innings for his side while plying his trade in the middle-order. The left-handed batsman has all the experience he needs to make this event his own and playing in familiar conditions further helps his cause.

Predictions apart, according to the numbers, believe it or not, Morgan is placed fourth in the list of leading run-scorers in ODIs since the 2015 World Cup. The left-hander has scored 3,039 runs at an average of 46.75 - something that surely makes him one of the probables for the top batting honours at the World Cup this year.

For those who need more than just numbers to believe his batting might, Morgan, recently, broke a roof tile with a huge six during the fifth ODI between England against Pakistan at Headingley. How's that for intent?

Quinton de Kock

A sweet timer of the ball who thrives on his fearless striking abilities, Quinton de Kock has established himself as South Africa's preferred opening batsman over the years. The left-handed batsman, who grew up as a baseball player, can take on any opposition bowling attack and give them a run for their money with his brutal hitting.

De Kock goes into this year's World Cup with 2,971 runs at an average of 50.33 in ODIs. There's no surprise to see him at the fifth spot in the list of top run-getters in the 50-over format since the 2015 edition of the World Cup. To put things in perspective, De Kock has amassed 353 runs, including three fifties and a hundred, in his last five ODI innings.

Given the conditions, De Kock is likely to cherish the challenge and tear into the opposition bowling attack. His success with the willow will be key to South Africa's hopes of getting rid of the 'chokers' tag and clinch their maiden World Cup title this year.

posted May 27 by Deepika Jain

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The ICC Cricket World Cup already has started with a bang on May 30. The mega event opened with an amazing opening ceremony.

The event was filled with stars like Farhan Akhtar, Shibani Dandekar and many other stars. Along with them there were also present these Tv stars and achors who will be seen in the one month long event. 

Mumbai: The ICC Cricket World Cup already has started with a bang on May 30. The mega event opened with an amazing opening ceremony.  

The ceremony started by calling all team captains on the stage followed by a 60 seconds challenge.

The event was filled with stars like Farhan Akhtar, Shibani Dandekar and many other stars. Along with them there were also present these Tv stars and anchors who will be seen in the one month long event.

Ridhima Pathak

Know for her strong voice, Ridhima Pathak is a professional voice-over artist. Ridhima will be seen reporting in the mega event, doing on field reporting and interacting with the fans and team members. Just a few days back Ridhima interviewed Virat Kohli.

Peya Jannatul

Bangladesh Beauty Peya Jannatul, who was anchoring in the Bangladesh’s T20 league, will be covering World Cup for Bangladesh TV and Gazi TV. Prior to her anchoring, Peya also starred in several commercial ads with many Bangladeshi cricketers.

Zainab Abbas

Pakistan’s popular sportsperson Zainab Abbas will be the prime presenter for Pakistan during the marquee event.Zainab has already covered for Pakistan Super League and has worked at Dunya News,Ten Sports etc.

Mayanti Langer

Mayanti Langer, wife of Indian cricketer Stuart Binny, is India’s most popular female anchor in the cricket world. Mayanti has a huge fan following in India. Mayanti Langer will be covering for Star sports during the World Cup.

Sanjana Ganesan 

Sanjana Ganesan will be another reporter, who will be seen during the World Cup. Sanjana will be reporting for Star Network. Sanjana Ganesan, who is an engineer, has also earned a gold medal. Sanjana then tried her luck in modelling and went on to be the finalist of Miss India in 2014.

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With the World Cup coming sharply into view, time is all but up for teams to make serious adjustments to their plans. We’re into a period of fine tuning. India, tournament favourites along with the hosts, England, have been putting the finishing touches to their preparations. In what looks set to be an aggressive tournament from a batting perspective, do India have the firepower to win their third World Cup?

The top three

This is the most dangerous aspect of India’s batting. Coming in first drop, captain Virat Kohli is the greatest ODI batsman of all time. In this cycle (since the end of the last World Cup), he has 3996 runs at an average of 79.92, including 17 centuries. No one comes close. Except, perhaps, Rohit Sharma and his 3,588 runs at 62.94 and 15 centuries. He may consistently and somewhat bafflingly fail in Test cricket, but Sharma is a leading light in the ODI game. His opening partner, Shikhar Dhawan, is no mug either.

This is the settled engine room of India’s ODI machine.

The middle order

This is where the picture becomes a little less clear. India haven’t found their ideal number four, although Ambati Rayudu is the man in possession and has enjoyed a reasonable time of things during India’s 4-1 series win in New Zealand, top scoring with 190 runs in the series. He averages 61 in this cycle, but from only 25 games. He has been a bit in and out of the side but has played in the last seven ODIs. Dinesh Karthik provides the competition.

It’s then on to a far more familiar face in the form of MS Dhoni. A man of his advancing years comes under severe scrutiny during any downturn in form, but he went someway to answering his critics with a couple of stellar performances in Australia in January. He’s India’s fourth top scorer in this cycle.

Positions six and seven are then a little unclear. Vijay Shankar batted six in Wellington, having made his debut in Australia, but this is, to date, his only innings with the bat. He bowls right-arm medium and India are clearly eyeing him up as a horses for courses selection in the all-rounder’s berth for a tournament in England.

Kedhar Jadhav appears likely to appear in some capacity in the lower middle order. He bowls some very handy off spin and has 982 runs at 44.64 in this cycle. He will likely bat ahead of the explosive batting of Hardik Pandya, who is more of a bowling all-rounder as things stand, but has the healthiest strike rate (116.58) of any Indian in this cycle to have played more than five games.

The bowlers

This is where India look likely to struggle compared to some of the competition. Bhuvneshwar Kumar has a handy record with the bat, but his average of 21 in this cycle is inflated by a 53 not out in his total of 315 runs. His strike rate of 71.42 is weak, too. Jasprit Bumrah, a certain starter if fit, is a stonewall number 11, although if India are relying on him, it will already be too late. Kuldeep Yadhav and Yuzvendra Chahal are the other spin options down the order, with Mohammed Shami looking likely to be considered in the seam spot. None of these are quality batsmen down the order in the way that England have firepower provided by the likes of Liam Plunkett, David Willey and Adil Rashid.

But – and this is quite important – these bowlers are better bowlers than their counterparts. India have genuine variety and a plethora of options in attack. Ravi Ashwin hasn’t put on a blue shirt in over a year and Ravindra Jadeja has played his way back into contention with some sterling work in Australia. He is a more than useful batsman.

So, will India opt for superior bowling options, or compromise slightly in the pursuit of batting depth by opting for Jadeja ahead of Kuldeep or Chahal? It’s not a question England have to ask themselves, but will India make the right choice?

“As far as our chances are concerned, I will not hesitate in saying that we are the favourites,” Sachin Tendulkar told PTI. “I have gone on record saying that we have a perfect balance in the team where we will be competitive in any part of the world or on any surface.” The confidence is there and justifiably so.

India certainly have the top order and the bowlers to succeed – although any injury or loss of form suffered by Kohli would render them almost uncompetitive (he’s just that good) – but the middle order is undoubtedly a concern. Whereas early wickets aren’t so harmful to England, they could decimate India. The drop off in averages and strike rates away from their top three is marked, whereas England are capable of carrying on the most vicious of assaults.

The game plan to beat India? Get early wickets. It’s as simple and as difficult as that! If you can keep Kohli quiet, you will keep India quiet. Good luck with that, though.

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India’s 15-man squad for the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup in England and Wales was announced at the BCCI headquarters in Mumbai on Monday (April 15). Ambati Rayudu and Rishabh Pant have not been included in the squad while Dinesh Karthik, KL Rahul and Ravindra Jadeja have found places. The team will be captained by Virat Kohli while Rohit Sharma will be his deputy. MS Dhoni is the first-choice wicketkeeper.

India’s squad for ICC World Cup 2019:

Virat Kohli (C)

Virat Kohli will lead India as captain for the first time in an ICC World Cup tournament. This will be the third World Cup tournament of his career. Kohli was also a part of India’s trophy winning campaign in 2011 and would hope he could win it as captain this time around.

Rohit Sharma (VC)

Rohit Sharma has been included in the side as the vice-captain. The batsman has led India in Kohli’s absence on a few occasions since last year and has never lost a series. This will be the second World Cup for Sharma, as he featured for the men in blue in the 2015 World Cup tournament.

Shikhar Dhawan

Shikhar Dhawan has been picked in the side as India look to stick to the successful opening pair of Sharma and Dhawan. The duo were in prime form last year, during the Asia Cup and West Indies series. But the form has taken a hit this year, as both Sharma and Dhawan pulled off inconsistent performances. India would hope the pair come off good at the World Cup.

KL Rahul

KL Rahul has been selected as the back-up opener for India, in case Sharma and Dhawan pick up an injury or fail to perform. The right-handed batsman returned to India’s side in the series against Australia, in which he scored a half century in the T20Is. Coach Ravi Shastri, in an interview, had said that India could look to use Rahul as the number three option while pushing Kohli down to number four position in the World Cup. It might solve India’s perennial number four woes, which might have prompted the selectors to include him in the side.

Vijay Shankar

Vijay Shankar could be summed up as one of the surprise inclusions in the team. Since the Asia Cup last year, Ambati Rayudu was seen as the number four choice for India. But his recent struggles against Australia and New Zealand paved way for Shankar to make his case. The Tamil Nadu allrounder has shown the ability to hit big shots, coming down at no. 4, and also has proved to be an effective death-bowling option.

MS Dhoni (WK)

At 37, MS Dhoni has been selected as India’s primary wicketkeeper. This will be his fourth World Cup campaign for the men in blue and is likely going to be his final. It will only be the second time Dhoni will not enter as the captain in a World Cup tournament. Kohli’s captaincy has been questioned of late, and many cricket pundits have suggested that Dhoni’s presence makes Kohli a better captain. Dhoni’s form with the bat has also improved in 2019 and he could be a key player for the side.

Kedar Jadhav

Kedar Jadhav restored the faith in selectors when he went on to win a couple of games for India against Australia, along with MS Dhoni, in January. The allrounder has shown that he has the ability to settle down a side, and accelerate in the death overs. He has also shown the ability to pick up wickets in the middle overs, which makes him an asset for the side.

Dinesh Karthik

There was a lot of debate over who should be MS Dhoni’s understudy at the World Cup – Rishabh Pant or Dinesh Karthik. Despite Pant delivering better performance than DK in IPL, the selectors have gone ahead with DK as their pick. The reason, for the selection, is that the Tamil Nadu cricketer is viewed as a better keeper than the Delhi youngster, according to MSK Prasad. It means that unless Dhoni is injured or ill, it is unlikely Karthik will get a chance to feature in playing XI for India throughout the tournament.

Yuzvendra Chahal

Yuzvendra Chahal has been the pick among the bowlers for India since the limited-overs series against South Africa last year. The leggie also carried on his form in the IPL, and is among the leading wicket-takers. Chahal has the ability to pick up crucial wickets in the middle overs, even though he could prove to be a tad bit expensive at times.

Kuldeep Yadav

Kuldeep Yadav has been the perfect ally to Chahal since last year. When the two spinners bowl in tandem, they are always able to produce their best. The combination of Kuldeep and Chahal are touted to be India’s biggest strength going into the World Cup.

Bhuvneswhar Kumar

The seamer Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been in and out of India’s team due to injuries in the past couple of years. At one point, he was regarded as the best death bowler India has produced since Zaheer Khan. But the right-armer’s form has taken a dip and his speed has slowed down a bit. He has been picked as India’s third seamer in the tournament, and may have to sit on the bench, with Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami being the frontline bowlers.

Jasprit Bumrah

During a Mumbai Indians match in the ongoing IPL tournament, fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah went down on the ground, injured. All of a sudden, Twitter went ablaze with Indian cricket fans hoping and praying for Bumrah’s well-being. This is a testament to Bumrah’s importance in India’s 15-man squad. The right-armer is India’s primary fast bowling option at the World Cup, and many cricket pundits, and fans, believe that he could be the match-winner for India on fast UK pitches.

Hardik Pandya

Hardik Pandya is likely to be India’s primary allrounder in the playing XI, despite his fitness concerns. Pandya has the ability to fire quick boundaries in the death overs. He also has proven to be an effective wicket-taking bowling option in overseas conditions. Even though he has been in-and-out of the side due to controversies and back injuries, it is likely that India include him in the side in every game at the World Cup.

Ravindra Jadeja

Ravindra Jadeja played his first ODI in 14 months last year at the Asia Cup with Pandya getting injured. Since then, he has proven to be an effective asset into the side, with both bat and the ball. On the eve of World Cup squad selection, the left-armer won the match for Chennai Super Kings against Kolkata Knight Riders, scoring an unbeaten 31 in 14 balls. But despite all his plaudits, Jadeja would have to compete for a position in the playing XI against Pandya or Chahal, which might make things difficult for him.

Mohammed Shami

Mohammed Shami has returned a changed bowler since controversies and injuries derailed his career last year. The overseas tours to Australia and New Zealand have improved his skills, and he is starting to trouble the oppositions’ batsmen with the new ball. The fast bowler was impressive in the series against Australia, and thus, he is likely to be India’s second seamer choice in the playing XI, along with Bumrah.

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