Tag: 2015 World Cup strategies

Pakistan’s 2015 World Cup strategy

Same as ever really. Just sort of hope that everything magically works itself out.

Shahid Afridi is a tremendously good one-day bowler, but you’d hope to see a stronger attack alongside him. Seven foot Mohammad Irfan is the novelty, while Junaid Khan is perhaps the class.

But it’s the batting that’s the real problem. The fact that Afridi isn’t significantly less reliable than most of those above him says it all really, because Afridi is literally as unreliable as it is possible to be. If it weren’t for the fact that he has 11 international hundreds to his name, you would consider him reliably useless.

So Pakistan’s strategy basically boils down to having Misbah-ul-Haq wearily trying to inch them to 150 before making a frighteningly good attempt at defending that.

King Cricket rating: Brendan Gleeson’s character in The Guard

Very few traditional heroic qualities, but a faint suspicion that they might somehow do the job anyway.

Other nations’ World Cup strategies.


The West Indies’ 2015 World Cup strategy

Let’s take a day off from the office politics and instead take a look at some cricket. The West Indies beat India today.

Hypothesis testing

One of the most interesting things in the run-in to the World Cup – often more interesting than the tournament itself – is that we can compare the different approaches of the various nations. England’s strategy will change precisely five more times before the tournament starts, but most teams have a fair idea by now how they’re going to try and win the precious few 50-over matches that really matter.

One-day cricket is very formulaic, but the rules change rapidly and no two squads are the same, so we don’t really know for certain the best approach at present. We’d slotted the West Indies into the second tier of teams behind Australia, India and South Africa, but looking at their team, we think we might be doing them a disservice. Also Sri Lanka now that we come to think about it.

What are they doing?

They’re hampered by the absence of Sunil Narine and who knows whether he’ll be back for the World Cup. But despite this, they have a lot going for them. Their most obvious strengths are a plethora of all-rounders and a surfeit of might in their lower order batting. Obviously, the two are linked.

If Denesh Ramdin seems at least a place too high at number five, a six-seven-eight of Kieron Pollard, Andre Russell and Darren Sammy gives them three shots at death-over carnage. With Dwayne Bravo currently opening the batting and three specialist bowlers, they also aren’t short of options with the ball. One-day cricket has shown us time and time again that if you don’t have one Wasim Akram, you may still be able to get away with a motley assortment of Chris Harrises and Sanath Jayasuriyas.

What are their chances?

It seems a rather fragile strategy – light on batting, light on out-and-out bowlers – but we can see it working. It’s almost a case of carrying maximum ammunition and then just firing indiscriminately hoping something hits the spot. It’s a funny sort of numbers game, but perhaps it fits the current fielding restrictions and whatnot.

King Cricket rating: Daniel Day Lewis in Gangs of New York

A few sound fundamentals, but mostly just throwing all sorts of stuff out there in the hope that some of it sticks.

Other nations’ World Cup strategies.


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