Here are my Telegraph Fantasy Cricket teams for the 2019 edition of the T20 Blast:
After a disappointing World Cup with Afghanistan, can spin bowler Rashid Khan lead Kings of Khan to glory?
Aside from Rashid, paceman Tom Helm is highly thought of while the likes of Steven Mullaney and Wayne Parnell should make all-round contributions. Wicketkeeper Ben Cox is another proven performer in the shortest format while teammate Callum Ferguson excelled in the latest edition of the Big Bash.
Lancashire’s Liam Livingstone will lead 2020 Vision and hope to catch the eye of the England selectors having fallen of the radar somewhat. It may be the last time that we see Michael Klinger in action and David Willey will want to prove that he should still be in England’s T20I squad having missed out on selection for the ODI World Cup. Pat Brown will also hope to back up some impressive performances in previous seasons having being touted as an England candidate while the likes of Laurie Evans (Prominent on the franchise circuit), Ryan Higgins and Ollie Robinson could also make a case for an England call-up.
One of the season’s stars in Somerset’s Tom Banton will skipper Ghetto Blasters. Tom Curran and Liam Dawson will want to put the frustrations of sitting on the sidelines at the World Cup behind them whilst the likes Dawid Malan and Chris Jordan as well as possibly Sam Northeast, the precociously talented Delray Rawlins and even Banton himself might hope to catch Ed Smith’s eye.
I’ll let you know how I got on come the competition’s conclusion.
Please find listed below six women’s international players that I suggested keeping an eye on when T20I status was dished out all around the globe. Firstly, here’s the link to my original post…
Louise Little (Ireland)
A tough time for the still only sixteen-year-old but hopefully she’ll be stronger for it.
Mariko Hill (Hong Kong)
Has shown glimpses of her ability but will want to make more significant contributions.
Pauke Siaka (Papua New Guinea)
A name synonymous with cricket in PNG, her games played are a small sample size on which to make a judgement.
Naruemol Chaiwai (Thailand)
Quite a few games under her belt now and performing well. She’s averaging 27.29 with the bat and has a top score of 64 not out scored against Malaysia in Bangkok last February.
Rubina Chhetry (Nepal)
Has produced some encouraging displays with both bat and ball including figures of 4-2 against Indonesia last January.
Cher van Slobbe (Netherlands)
Has chipped in with some wickets in her few games played.
Please find listed below six men’s international teams that I suggested keeping an eye on when T20I status was dished out all around the globe. Firstly, here’s the link to my original post…
The number in brackets denotes current world T20I ranking.
One of the few South American countries with any great cricket history, Argentina have plenty of work to do having fallen off the radar somewhat.
A few years on from any meaningful international success, Canada will hope to climb back into the top 20 soon. South African Davy Jacobs leads the side nowadays. The successful launch of the Global T20 Canada and with it the attraction of international stars will hopefully inspire a new generation of Canadians to take up the game.
One of the early Associate trailblazers, Denmark are looking to make a name for themselves once again. Coached by Ireland cult hero Jeremy Bray, they came unstuck in recent World Cup Qualifiers finishing behind Jersey, Germany and Italy.
Like Denmark, Fiji’s proximity to a major cricketing nation, in its case Australia, made them an early Associate force but they’ve got a lot to do in order to ascend the current rankings.
It’s early days but there’s a lot of cricket activity in Rwanda and they’ll surely be on the rise soon. They’ve got a lovely ground and cricket is the fastest growing sport in the country.
South Korea (64)
Languishing at the wrong end of the ladder, South Korea have some technically correct players but need to adapt to the modern game. In a recent regional World Cup Qualifier SK finished ahead of Japan and Indonesia but we won’t be seeing them in Australia next year.
Please click on the link below for full rankings:
Please find listed below six men’s international players that I suggested keeping an eye on when T20I status was dished out all around the globe. Firstly, here’s the link to my original post…
Simon Ateak (Ghana)
Has made a couple of starts in the few matches that he’s played.
Harrison Carlyon (Jersey)
Struck 50 in his only T20I innings to date against arch rivals Guernsey exactly one month ago.
Ahmad Faiz (Malaysia)
Has made some useful contributions with the bat in the past week including a knock of 43 against Maldives and helping see his team to another victory by scoring 27 not out against Thailand both in Kuala Lumpur.
Andrew Mansale (Vanuatu)
A tough time so far but he’s off the mark.
Calum MacLeod (Scotland)
One of the Associate games most proven players continues to go from strength to strength. He averaged 117 in the Oman T20I Quadrangular in February and recently struck an ODI ton against Afghanistan, not for the first time.
Carl Sandri (Italy)
Errrr, I may have got this one wrong. He’s not been seen for a few years!
It’s been well publicised that Mali Women were dismissed for the lowest ever T20I total last week… 4 all out against Rwanda!
What some of you may have missed is that they followed that up with 11 all out against Tanzania the following day then 10 all out against Uganda the next. That’s 25-30 then!
They made 30-9 against Rwanda again yesterday mind…
So things are on the up!
This of course has brought into question the validity of the records being set and T20I statistics in general. I’ve heavily promoted my proposed structure of international cricket, one that would currently see a team such as Mali not hold full international status but have the right to earn it. Teams such as England would currently have full international status but could lose it. That’s meritocracy in sport (Hey Manchester City Women’s football team… meritocracy!).
As it stands, all international women’s teams have full status. I’m a big believer in being better for gaining experience. Mali will improve and I look forward to hearing about it. I’m not a fan of the idea of picking and choosing statistics. Cricket should be a global game and whilst this may have been a chastening experience for the Malians they will be better for it. International sport should be ruthless. That is how the best help the weaker sides improve and therefore create competition. Don’t get me started on critics of the USA Women’s football (Soccer!) team. for their celebrations against Thailand. Anybody who has a problem with that is not someone who should be allowed anywhere near competitive sport. Even if it’s the absolute doldrums of the village cricket circuit, I don’t ever want anybody taking it easy on me!
What can I say?
I don’t follow the IPL all that closely but as a self confessed cricket nut who regularly hands out fantasy cricket selection advice… I should probably try harder next time!
Disclaimer: Not sure about the winner’s team name. Should’ve been disqualified if you ask me then I’d have finished in a far more respectable sixteenth place!
Following injury to the unfortunate Dawid Malan, England have called up Sussex’s Philip Salt for the one-off Twenty20 International against Pakistan tomorrow.
Salt has a top score of 74 in domestic T20 cricket, spent some time on the franchise circuit during the winter and regardless of format, has a habit of getting Sussex off to some brisk starts. Hopefully he can do the same for England if he makes the playing XI.