In 2019, England’s cricketers won an incredible World Cup final against New Zealand. The victory, via a Super Over, was the team’s first major trophy in an ICC 50-over tournament and it was well deserved after the side responded to a disappointing tournament four years earlier.
Later in 2021, England will have a chance to land a double with the ICC T20 World Cup taking place in India across October and November. They have won the competition before, back in 2010, and lost out in the 2016 final to West Indies in the most dramatic fashion.
World Cup Contenders
16 teams have qualified for the seventh edition of the ICC T20 World Cup. Hosts India are joined by defending champions the West Indies while the list of participants is completed by England, Pakistan, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Ireland, Scotland, the Netherlands, Papua New Guinea, Oman and Namibia.
Markets have been open for the tournament for some time and, according to odds supplied via sources at sbo.net, India are the favourites at current industry best odds of 5/2. England are next at a general 4/1 while Australia are just behind at a top price of 5/1.
Moving through the list, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa and West Indies are the teams in with a good chance of winning, according to the bookmakers.
There’s a lot of T20 cricket to be played in the run up to the World Cup and those numbers will continue to adjust, depending on results. Sbo.net will also provide new updates and opinion pieces plus offers and promotions for those who are interested in getting involved.
Whatever happens, England will remain among the favourites but have they got what it takes to claim a historic double?
Barring injury, England are likely to start with their explosive opening pair of Johnny Bairstow and Jason Roy. Jos Buttler has opened the batting on occasions but the wicket keeper is more likely to float around the order and come in when required.
There have been questions over England’s number three position where Dawid Malan is the current incumbent. Malan had previously risen to number one in the world T20 batsman rankings on the back of England’s second individual century in this format. However, in the recent T20i series with India, the left hander was criticised for his speed of scoring.
England may look to their test match skipper Joe Root as a like-for-like replacement but could there be a recall for Alex Hales? As a more powerful option at number three, Hales could come back in after missing the 2019 World Cup due to disciplinary reasons.
Skipper Eoin Morgan, Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler should take up positions four to six in the batting order.
England have far more questions in the bowling department where Adil Rashid and Jofra Archer may be the only two players certain of their place. Among the other bowlers looking for a starting slot are Sam Curran, Tom Curran. Moeen Ali, Mark Wood, Chris Woakes and Reece Topley.
England have many options in both seam and spin departments but the selectors would like to establish a settled attack ahead of the World Cup.
Can England do it?
Twenty20 cricket is a much tougher format to predict with any great certainty. In such a short space of time, one big innings across ten overs can take the game away from the favourites and we’ve seen more upsets in this format than any other.
England certainly have a good chance of winning the World Cup and much will depend on that explosive batting unit. If Roy, Bairstow, Morgan, Buttler and Stokes are fit and firing, there are few attacks that can prevent them hitting team totals in excess of 200.
There are some selection issues to address, both in the bowling department and with that key number three batting position. The team will be working on that in the months that follow but with a few tweaks England will be confident of claiming a historic double.