ENGLAND get the chance to not only win the ICC World Twenty 20 for the second time but also to avenge their defeat in their first game of this year’s tournament to the men from the Caribbean. They were flayed by Chris Gayle who hit them to all parts of the ground in getting a hundred.
The Englishmen have bounced back superbly as they outbatted South Africa getting a record score in the bargain and though there were a few alarms against the Afghans they recovered very well to keep the winning rhythm up.
They have a devastating opening pair in Alex Hales and Jason Roy who look to hit from the first ball and in Joe Root they have a batsman capable of mixing the orthodox classical shots with the unorthodox and throw the bowlers off their line and length.
It was Root who took England to a win against South Africa when the Proteas had put up a huge score of 229 runs on the board.
Then comes Jos Buttler who is as powerful a hitter as the West Indian boys.
Eoin Morgan has not quite got going in the tournament and if he does that then England could be unstoppable. Their bowling also has a fine balance of seam and spin with Ben Stokes bowling brilliantly in the death overs.
The manner in which the Windies demolished India is a warning to England that it is not a team dependent on Chris Gayle.
The batting of Charles, Simmons and Andre Russell was of the highest class and they are the danger men for England.
For the West Indians the key bowler has been Sam Badree who bowls his leg-spinners accurately and not only keeps the lid on the scoring but also picks up crucial wickets.
The West Indian quicker bowlers have to just watch out for the wides and no balls that they bowl in their desire to let it rip. In limited overs cricket especially the T20 format no team wants the penalty of free hits that can shift the momentum away from them.
If the Eden Gardens pitch is like what it was for the India-Pakistan game then Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid could be a handful but if it’s the usual pitch then there could be plenty of fireworks from the bat. - PMG