T20 World-cup 2024: The Drama Continues

Cricket player shouting for victory while holding his cricket bat. Photo by Yogendra Singh.

By Yousaf K

This year’s T20 World Cup has truly been spectacular.  For the first time in its history, there have been 20 teams involved in the battle for the ultimate victory. The world cup so far, has been more inclusive than the previous editions.  It is great to see games people would not normally witness from the associate nations – even in their loss.

United States showed a resilient performance against the top contender Pakistan. The U.S. team has played some amazing cricket, evidenced by their advancement to the next stage of the tournament.  Scotland batted superbly against the excellent Australian bowling line-up, coming so close to beating them, but falling short of the super eight – despite defeating Namibia and Oman – due to England’s thrashing performance against Oman, chasing the 47 runs target in just 3.2 overs. South Africa, another Test playing country, was on the verge of loss against Nepal, which is playing its second world cup in its cricket history.  Ireland, a Test side, was beaten by a stellar performance from the associate team, Canada.

Afghanistan’s progress has somewhat shattered chances of New Zealand’s advance into the next stage; Pakistan could not make it to the super eight due to USA’s brilliant performance in the group stage; and Sri Lanka got out of the event because of Bangladesh’s back-to-back victories.  Unfortunately, among the associate nations, only Uganda and Oman did not bring real entertainment to their fans.

Totaling eight teams, the super eight stage consists of two groups as follows:

Group 1                                                                   Group 2

India                                                                    South Africa

Australia                                                                  England

Afghanistan                                                          West Indies

Bangladesh                                                                 USA

Progressing eight teams into the quarterfinal stage, the ICC event got more dramatic in most of its defining matches.  Afghanistan thrashing Australia in a must-win game gave the Afghani fans continued hope for a spot in the semis. Australia, on the other hand, had a major chance where they had to defeat India in their last super eight-stage contest.  Meanwhile, Rohit Sharma, from the Indian team, was in sublime form.  He ultimately, became the reason for India’s victory against the mighty Australia.  The only hope left for the Australians was Bangla-tigers, where they had to secure a win against Afghanistan.  They too were unable to stop the Afghans from going into the semis for the first time in their cricket history.

In Group 2, USA faced the undefeated South Africa, the defending champions England, and the West Indies.  In this stage of the tournament, the associate team was unable to lock a win against the group teams.  West Indies, which came hard in the initial ties, also suffered a couple of defeats, leading the two times T20 champion to the exit door.  Both South Africa and England have played some tremendous cricket in the super eight stage.  The two teams will lock their horns against Afghanistan and India, respectively.

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