It’s promising to be a fantastic summer for English cricket fans. Not only is there a fascinating Ashes series to look forward to in August and September, but the 2019 Cricket World Cup is due to kick off on home soil this May, and England are currently the favourites to win the competition.
Whilst the England team has been struggling with problems such as the Alex Hales saga, their squad has been named and it could give them their best chance to win the Cricket World Cup in years. What’s remarkable is the fact that England have somehow grown from one of the worst ODI sides to becoming real contenders. But does Trevor Bayliss’ team have what it takes to go the distance in what promises to be one of the most exciting cricket competitions?
Who is in the England 2019 Cricket World Cup squad?
With Alex Hales withdrawing from the squad after a ban for recreational drug use, there was plenty of debate about who would form the final Cricket World Cup line-up. Once again Eoin Morgan will be taking up the captaincy, and we can expect to see the familiar faces of Jonny Bairstow and Joss Buttler scoring plenty of runs.
Pace bowlers will be represented by the likes of Chris Woakes, Mark Wood, Liam Plunkett, Tom Curran and Jofra Archer who will be expected to serve up some of the 90mph deliveries that he showed against Pakistan recently. This meant that we won’t see David Willey in the England World Cup squad as Trevor Bayliss thought that seven fast bowlers was one too many.
In terms of spin bowlers, it looks like Joe Denly has been left on the sidelines and we can expect to see Hampshire’s Liam Dawson in his place alongside the formidable likes of Moeen Ali. Ben Stokes will once again be expected to deliver the goods with the seam, and we can expect the likes of Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Jason Roy, James Vince and Mark Woods using their talents to guide England to their first ever Cricket World Cup triumph.
Why 2019 could be England’s year in the Cricket World Cup
Despite going 44 years without winning the Cricket World Cup, 2019 is currently looking very promising. England’s 2015 campaign ended in disaster when they somehow finished behind Bangladesh in the group stages and booked an early flight home.
But since then we have seen the ECB director, Andrew Strauss, making a real effort to prioritise white ball cricket, and the appointments of Trevor Bayliss as head coach and Eoin Morgan as captain look to be very shrewd moves.
Whilst the England team will be lamenting the loss of Alex Hales, there is little denying the fact that their batting couldn’t be better. With the likes of Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root and Jos Buttler all being capable of scoring plenty of runs under intense pressure, we’re expecting England to produce a strong run rate this summer.
The addition of Jofra Archer’s pace to the bowling attack with bring a new dimension to the England team. Plus Adil Rashid’s leg spin will also help to provide variety during the middle overs of their Cricket World Cup campaign.
But ultimately, it’s the captain Eoin Morgan who could hold the key to England’s success. The much-loved captain has been pivotal in turning things around for the team, and his leadership will be critical when they play their first match against South Africa on 30 May.
Who could stop England’s Cricket World Cup triumph?
Whilst this is arguably England’s best-ever ODI team, it’s clear that their World Cup campaign is not a foregone conclusion. Here are some of the main contenders who will be battling England for the 2019 Cricket World Cup crown.
Any team boasting the likes of Virat Kohli is going to be very difficult to beat, and it’s clear that India will give England a very close run this summer. Whilst India were beaten in the semi-finals of the 2015 Cricket World Cup by Australia, their squad has grown significantly since then and they have been the team to beat for the past two years.
It’s hard to look beyond Kohli who is arguably the best batsman in the world, but expect the likes of Rohit Sharma to also put in plenty of important runs this summer. Whilst spin has been India’s speciality, there’s also been real developments in their seam bowling.
The Indian bowling attack will get a big step up here thanks to the skills of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah. All of which points to a very well-rounded team, and with former England captain Nasser Hussain at the helm, we’re expecting big things from India.
The current Cricket World Cup champions, Australia, may be still suffering the shame of their ball-tampering scandal, but we think that Aaron Finch’s team should easily book themselves a semi-final appearance at least.
The defending champions will have their cause bolstered thanks to the return of former captain Steve Smith, and David Warner will also be welcomed back as an opener. Whilst Australia may have been a laughing stock not to long ago, the appointment of Ricky Ponting as assistant coach could be a big move. Don’t forget that Australia managed to draw 2-2 with India earlier this year, and their recent impressive win over Pakistan will also give them plenty of confidence.
Although there are still big questions about Australia’s ability with the ball, we think that with Warner and Smith in the batting line-up, the defending champions should be able to cause some big problems for England this summer.
New Zealand are well-known as being the dark horses of one-day cricket, and there’s every indication that they could cause a few upsets at the 2019 Cricket World Cup. Whilst New Zealand were comprehensively beaten by Australia in the final of the 2015 Cricket World Cup, we can expect Gary Stead’s team to handle themselves well in the coming weeks.
Although the Black Caps will have to go without the expertise of Brendon McCullum, there’s real hope that Kane Williamson will be on hand to help New Zealand get the respect they deserve. Expect to see plenty of runs from other quality batsmen like Martin Guptill, Ross Taylor, Colin Munro and Henry Nicholls.
In terms of bowling, we can expect to see Mitchell Santer’s spin bowling being hugely important, whilst Tim Southee and Trent Boult should do some damage with the seam under favourable English conditions. All of which sets up New Zealand to once again pull off some serious giant-killing this summer.