T20 World Cup:West Indies taking on Scotland in Hobart in their first match of the tournament.
T20 World Cup: After a rousing start in Group A over the weekend, the action at the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 shifts to Group B on Monday with West Indies taking on Scotland in Hobart in their first match of the tournament.
has been anything but smooth sailing for West Indies in the recent past. The squad that arrived in Australia have found the going tough, losing a T20I series against the hosts, and just about managing to see off a spirited UAE side in one of the warm-up games. Having underperformed in the previous edition, skipper Nicholas Pooran has his task cut out as he tries to rebuild West Indies as the powerhouse of T20I cricket, which they were, not so long ago.
The current Windies squad lacks the stardust and depth of Daren Sammy’s teams that went on to lift the cup twice. It also remains to be seen how much Shimron Hetmyer’s absence, having missed his flight before subsequently being dropped, will affect the side. Hetmyer and his big hits will be sorely missed but the former champions have enough in the tank to start proceedings with a win. West Indies and Scotland’s previous warm-up games were washed out due to rain. There aren’t too many punters betting on Pooran’s side going all the way in the tournament but they are expected to progress to the Super 12s.
Scotland, meanwhile, come into the game on the back of a win against Netherlands. Richie Berrington’s side had a memorable outing last year and will fancy their chances as West Indies have looked shaky with bat and ball in recent times. The Windies still have a bevy of big-hitters, including captain Pooran himself but their inexperienced bowling attack will still have to do very well to go far in the T20 World Cup.
Since the 2021 T20 World Cup, Scotland haven’t played much cricket and were comfortably outplayed when they clashed against New Zealand in the run-up to the tournament. They barely scraped through a win against the Dutch and will have to rely on Berrington, Josh Davey and Brad Wheal. Bowling remains a concern for the Scots and they will have to be on top of their game if they have to pull off a giant-killing act.
Nicholas Pooran: On his day, the southpaw can rip into the best of bowling attacks and he will be central to West Indies’ fortunes in the T20 World Cup. However, he would need the likes of Kyle Mayers, an equally belligerent stroke maker, Rovman Powell and the seasoned Jason Holder to rally around him for the Men in Maroon to score big runs. Pooran’s explosiveness and maturity in the middle makes him one of the players to watch out for across teams.
Brad Wheal: The South Africa-born pacer has been an improved player in the shorter formats in the recent past and the Scots will rely on Wheal to provide early breakthroughs. The batters will be targeting the shorter boundaries in Hobart and Wheal will be expected to use his recent exploits to ensure that West Indies’ big hitters don’t take the contest away from the Scots. Wheal enjoyed a fine summer, winning the T20 Blast in England with the Hampshire Hawks.