The World Cup fever has begun and how! Afghanistan defeated Pakistan in the first of the warm-up games to stir the pot. One of the strong favourites India were jolted by New Zealand, while Australia got one past England. Although all these are just warm-ups, the games managed to get the adrenaline going. At the same time, we have started our view of the tournament with two articles: top five batsmen of the 2019 World Cup and the top five bowlers of the 2019 World Cup.
Many of you might have wondered why we missed out some strong names in the top batsmen list. That’s not only because we were listing only five, but also because some of them are wicket-keepers. This article picks up five ‘keepers who are bound to be part of your fantasy picks.
England’s finest finisher and perhaps the best hitter in ODIs at the moment, Jos Buttler is an exciting name to pick in your side. He has 3, 531 ODI runs and 188 dismissals in just 131 matches.
The England vice-captain is such a vital part of their plans. Buttler is a match-winner in the ODIs and will get enough time in the middle to pick up runs. Not just that, his experience of keeping in these conditions will come in handy.
Quinton de Kock
The 26-year-old de Kock is one of the most feared opening batsmen of the current era. The stylish left-hander has 21 half-centuries and 14 centuries in 106 ODIs at a SR of nearly 96. De Kock was in good form even during the recently concluded IPL.
South Africa will rely on de Kock’s ability to give quick starts on the batsmen-friendly tracks in England. With a strong pace bowling unit, South Africa and de Kock could see a number of dismissals behind the wicket as well.
A surprise pick in our list, Shahzad is a pillar for Afghanistan at the top of their batting. He has 2, 720 runs to his name in 82 ODIs at a healthy average of 34.43 and a SR of 88.68. Like he has done against Ireland in the recent series, Shahzad’s quick starts are an asset for Afghanistan.
His ‘keeping may not be up to scratch, but MS (as he calls himself) can be a safe bet behind the sticks. With Afghanistan all set to surprise quite a few teams, we could witness Shahzad’s pyrotechnics leading their charge.
One of the biggest names in contemporary cricket, MS Dhoni comes with 10, 500 runs in 341 ODIs at a staggering average of 50.72. Add to it the 434 dismissals to his name, Dhoni is one name you can’t not have in your side.
Dhoni’s ability to handle crunch moments and lift the side from tough situations makes him vital for India’s plans. They will rely on his experience in front and behind the stumps. Another sure pick for your side.
One of the best young players of this generation, Hope is the biggest hope of former World Champions West Indies. Coming at the top of the order, he has 2, 247 runs at an average of 51.06.
He comes on the back of a spectacular tri-series in Ireland, with 470 runs in five games. Hope has a solid technique and the conditions won’t be a problem to adapt. With the Windies keeper set to get lots of opportunities to play long innings, he should be a must pick of your side.
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