Legendary Australian cricketer picks his favourites for this year's World Cup
With just over a week left to flag off the cricketing world's biggest showpiece event, predictions have been surfacing thick and fast.
With just over a week left to flag off the cricketing world's biggest showpiece event, predictions have been surfacing thick and fast. From choosing the tournament favourites to predicting the dark horses to watch out for, the game's experts have certainly been setting the tone for the pre-tournament fervour.
In the latest prediction, one of Australia's most celebrated cricketing heroes, Ricky Ponting, has picked his favourites for the upcoming Cricket World Cup. Interestingly, it is not Australia who get the backing from their former skipper to lift the cup this year.
Ponting has picked host nation England as his favourites to win the glory this time around. The three-time World Cup champion also opined that the only teams that can get close to Eoin Morgan's side this year, are India and Australia. And given England's recent run of form, it isn't surprising to see Ponting pick them as the tournament favourites this year.
"Initially, it would be England for two reasons. England have started playing well in limited overs and the tournament will be played on home. Naturally, they will have some home advantage. But they will be challenged by India and Australia," the 44-year-old was quoted as saying by Times of India.
After the humiliating exit from the World Cup in 2015, the cricketing fraternity witnessed England redeem itself into a fierce team in the limited overs format. Under the commendable leadership of Eoin Morgan, the likes of Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes and Moeen Ali, among others, have thrilled the crowds with their cricketing pyrotechnics, thereby helping England emerge as a force to reckon with in the 50-over format.
The recent series between England and Pakistan too witnessed the men in blue put forth an audacious show with bat and ball to justify their claim as the pre-tournament favourites for the World Cup this year.