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World Cup Washout

By Aravind Mahadevan, June 14, 2019, Categories: Entertainment, In the Mood, Slider, Sports, Top Story

Last week saw the weather play spoil sport with four matches washed out by rains – the maximum number of washouts so far in a World Cup and we are not even halfway through the games of the group stage yet. The tournament organizers have come in for a lot of stick from fans for not making provisions for a reserve day. Reserve days have only been provided for the knockout games, not for the games in the group stage

Following an unexpected reverse against Pakistan, England scored a resounding victory over Bangladesh, reminding everyone as to what a dangerous batting unit they are, notching up the highest team score so far of this completion. In fact, they have crossed 300 in all their three games played.

West Indies would have fancied their chances against a struggling South Africa as their bowlers made early inroads in the first few overs before rain put a halt to further proceedings. For South Africa, they have to pretty much win all their remaining five games now to have a chance of making the semi-finals. Their next game is against Afghanistan where they will hope to register their first win

New Zealand have started strongly with three wins and then a washed-out game against India but keep in mind that they have played Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, not the strongest opposition. For sure, stiffer tests await them in the future.

India followed to their win over South Africa with a convincing victory of Australia. But in the process, opener Shikhar Dhawan sustained a thumb injury that will likely rule him out of the rest of the tournament, which will be a big blow for India. But India will not be totally dissatisfied with the result of their game against New Zealand, as I believe that the New Zealand bowling attack could have posed a threat strong to the Indian batsmen in wet conditions.

After a Houdini-like escape against West Indies, Australia were in a spot of bother on more than one occasion against Pakistan but came through unscathed. After their batsmen failed to capitalize on a great start, the final total of 307 was definitely within the reach of Pakistan. Pakistan was also cruising at the halfway stage before a middle order collapse proved to be their undoing. Australia’s resilience is what makes them a force to compete with even when they are not playing at their best.

Pakistan’s performance so far has as usual been a source of frustration to their fans. They have been alternating between periods of brilliance and mediocrity and you never know which Pakistan will show up on a given day. Against Australia, sloppy fielding, bowling extras and injudicious shot selection contributed to their downfall

Sri Lanka have not played in a while now with their last two games against Pakistan and Bangladesh being washed out, though one suspects that they will happily take the two points they got from those games given their performance on the first two games

After a dream start for South Africa. It has been a bit of a letdown for Bangladesh as they still search for their second win.

For the minnows Afghanistan, their inexperience clearly showed against New Zealand as they could not make the most of a great start from their openers. They have shown the ability to compete with the stronger teams for brief spells but they have just not been able to sustain it for longer periods during a game.

Weather permitting, we are in a for exciting matches over the next week such as England vs West Indies and India vs Pakistan and New Zealand vs South Africa

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Aravind Mahadevan

I have been living in Hong Kong for the last 15 years. By profession, I am an investment banker and I am currently working for Morgan Stanley in their fixed income division. My favourite hobbies are chess, cricket and mathematics. In addition to following chess and cricket events, I am an active chess player and I play in tournaments in Hong Kong. I am also an avid reader of books- both fiction and non- fiction. Both myself and my wife Priya share a love of crime fiction, especially the Agatha Christie series. We also love travelling and exploring new vegetarian cuisines.

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