Monday, January 31, 2011

Cricket World Cup 2011

2011 will an exciting year of sport. Along with the NRL which is outstanding every year, we've also got both the cricket and the rugby world cups. I'm really looking forward to both.

In regards to the cricket world cup my New Zealand 11 would line up as follows...

Martin Guptil
Jessie Ryder
Ross Taylor
Kane Williamson
Scott Styris
James Franklin
Brendon McCullum
Daniel Vettori (c)
Nathan McCullum
Kyle Mills
Tim Southee

Forget statistics for selecting the team. New Zealand cricket will never amount to anything based on statistics. Team is based on passion / power / potential. With this line up we bat through to 8 but even 9, 10 and 11 know how to hit the ball. Bowling lacks the quick and really Adam Milne should be there instead of Mills. Forget experience here; it’s worth having one player who can hit the 140km plus mark. Oh well. The reality is as Twenty20 cricket proves; pace isn’t everything in limited over cricket. In fact taking all the pace off the ball seems to be the way to go. No place for How or Oram in this line up. How’s just not quite there. Oram is past it, sorry to say.

Keys in the world cup...

Fielding - will be to field with 100% commitment 100% of the time. Stop as many boundaries as possible with full commitment in the outfield, restrict the quick singles in close, pouncing on everything and threatening with run outs by hitting the stumps again and again. Catching is going to need to be sublime. See Sinclair for sublime!

Bowling – our slow bowlers are going to be key in building pressure. Vettori will and obviously has to lead the way. N McCullum, Styris and Guptill/Williamson at times need to be on fire and need to bowl smart. It would be nice to see Ryder roll the arm over every now and then as well. We’re going to need to mix things up. Open with McCullum on occasion. Don’t let batters get settled and bowl smart. No the opposition and set fields accordingly. Smart slow bowling will be the key though. Of course Franklin, Southee, Mills need to back up as well.

Batting – There is a lot of potential here. All our batters have fired before we just need a few of them to fire all at once. The key will be to read what’s happening in the game and ignore at times the proposed line up. Bring B McCullum in early if required. Hold Taylor back if the openers have set a solid platform and let Williamson or Styris craft it around. Over all the batters are going to have to bat aggressively. This is risky but I think it’s where we could find an edge. Ryder, Taylor, B McCullum and even Guptill have the ability to really go for it; go for it is what they are going to have to do.

My prediction - We’ll make the quarter finals as we always do. Then, as long as we don’t get India we’ll make it through to the semis, this will be a big upset! Here though we’ll go down. Most likely to India.


Emily and Matt said...

My first XI based on the given world cup squad (I agree Milne should be in there!) would be as follows:

B McCullum
N McCullum

Williamson has a career strike rate of 61 thus far and scoring as slow as he has shown he does puts too much pressure on the rest of the team especially when chasing. That said though - he knows how to score runs on the subcontinent so can't be too far off.
The team that wins the cup will likely have 2-3 spinners. Woodcock has shown enough and would be a good option if Vettori is struggling.
Franklin should be a useful bowler under the conditions and is more than a useful batsmen carrying the ability to score fast if needed or consolidate.
Bennett could just as easily be swapped out with Oram. Hopefully he gets some swing. I think saturdays game was a poor indicator of what he offers us.
Player of the tournament for the blackcaps will be Scott Styris.

Joseph McAuley said...

Styris? Player of T for the Black Caps? I'm not so sure about that. I'm picking Vettori and B McCullum to be solid, hopefully even more so than usual. Player of the T in my book will be Ryder, time for the big man to stand up and stay standing! Closely followed by Williamson who will average around 40 for tournament with a strike rate in late 80's!