September 12, 2006, 12:32 PM
Join Date: June 30, 2005
Location: Little Rock
Favorite Player: Viv Richards, Steve Waugh
Champions Trophy 2006
Champions Trophy Buildup
Less than one month to go. As the Champions trophy festive begins to warm up, we can only anticipate the fans getting fed with a heavy dosage of international cricket. I have few reservations for this tournament. Although, this is one of the money making vehicles for ICC, I see no need of this tournament scheduling six months before the world cup. The nature of the game a day-night affair is something that I personally do not like. The toss becomes too important and can decide the outcome of the game before the actual game starts. On the other side of the coin, the fans (one of the most important stakeholders) get a chance to watch the matches live after a full day of work. This can only generate higher ticket sales which equals to higher profit which in return benefits everyone. This Champion’s trophy tournament can be a measuring scale for all test playing nation where they stand and in five months how much improvement they have to make to win the big one.
This year the tournament will be held in India
Calcutta and Sri Lanka, West Indies, Zimbabwe and will square off each other. Two teams will qualify to play with the rest six. Teams then would be broken down into two groups. One group will have India, Australia, England and one of the qualifier; the other group will be Pakistan, South Africa, New Zealand and another qualifier.
Chances of winning it all:
Bangladesh: None. is still way behind the standard of the international cricket but they are improving. Their main problem is consistency. This will come with experience. The selectors, cricket board members, coaches are trying their best, working behind the scene to steady the ship. They lack strong nerve and experience. Looking at the big picture and looking at the talent and commitment they will be a force to be recon with in the near future. Their time hasn’t come yet. To qualify for the main event Bangladesh team need to beat any of the two giants Sri-Lanka or West Indies which is achievable and must beat .
Zimbabwe: None. With the fall out of some great players they also don’t stand a chance. They are extremely young and learning fast. The recent home series win against proves the point they can compete. The talent level is not up to the international standard yet. Just like they need more time. For to qualify they would have to repeat the heroic performance. That is a tough act to follow considering they are out of their comfort zone, home.
West Indies Hard to believe the defending champs are playing to qualify. If the recent home series thrashing of the Indians is any indication then I would say they are back. However, as fast as they had declined in the past, it can happen again and they may tank out to the lowly Bangladesh or . This team is very unpredictable. They have quality players but at times, it seems they don’t gel together. If ranking has any value they should qualify easily.
Sri Lanka: Lions are indeed looking like lions. They have already sent a fiery warning to all other nations by white washing 5 – 0 in an away series. The manner of the winnings was scary. Crossing 100 in the eighth over would put a chill through any potent opening bowling attack. Surely they have the fire power to beat anyone. Tom Moody is suddenly looking like a real coach.
England: Last 18 months has become a power house in the longer version of the game. However, in the limited over matches they can’t seem to win that often. With injuries to key players is reeling. Then have less chance than
New Zealand: They are an enigma. Recently they didn’t play that many matches. If bond and Fleming contributes every game they have a chance to win it all. Psychologically they can’t get over their nearest rival Australia for some reason. Vettori will also have to play a huge role if they want to go to the semis or finals.
South Africa: A force without much quality match practice. They will be ready I presume as always. A semi final exit on even a final exit may happen. I can’t see them winning the trophy though.
Pakistan: Disappointed performance in . 2-2 tie only says how vulnerable this team is. The bowling power they have in paper they can blowout anyone. The batting is much to be desired. They are experimenting with the opening pair well since they started playing ODI. Recently, under the Bob Woolmer, it seems that process has picked up another notch. I don’t think they can qualify for semis unless they solve their batting issues.
India: Chapel has slowly shaped up this team in to an unit. With Tendulkar getting into the grove, young pace attack, and having a home crowd on their side they have a big chance to win it all.
Australia: As good as they have performed in ODIs, one would think they have couple of these tournament titles under their belt. Unfortunately, that is not the case. has never won this tournament. This time they have named their strongest squad and are determined to win. My gut feelings say they may have to wait a little longer.
My pick is . Then the second pick Bangladesh, ofcourse. Cricket is a funny game where prediction means nothing. Praying and hoping for Bangladesh to make it out of qualifing round. That would be the best Eid gift for all Bangladeshi fans.
The Weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is an attribute of the Strong." - Gandhi.
Last edited by Tigers_eye; September 12, 2006 at 02:51 PM..