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Bhogle has high hopes for India in the World Cup knockout stage.

Bhogle has high hopes for India in the World Cup knockout stage.

According to renowned cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle, India is in a better position to win the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup this year than they were in the previous two tournaments.

India has won nine consecutive matches at this year’s World Cup, putting them in position to add a third title to their collection after previous victories in 1983 and 2011.

However, India will be wary of the fact that they were also unbeaten when they reached the semi-finals in Australia in 2015, and had only lost once at the previous World Cup in England and Wales before being eliminated at the final four stage.

On the latest episode of The ICC Review podcast, Bhogle discussed India’s progress at this World Cup with host Brian Murgatroyd, and the respected commentator believes the tournament hosts are in a strong position to defeat New Zealand in the semi-finals and claim a third title.

“I wonder with a fair bit of cricket (at Wankhede Stadium) recently whether it will grip a bit and If it does then it is a big advantage for India,” Bhogle said in an interview.

“Funnily, at the Wankhede, the toss has become a big factor because the ball is doing alarming things under the lights in the first 10 overs.”

“In the first 10 overs of four games, seventeen wickets have fallen.”

“The ideal strategy would be to bat first, score 330 or 340, and take two or three wickets in the first Powerplay.”

“India should fancy their chances.”

New Zealand defeated India in the most recent World Cup in 2019, winning by an 18-run margin at Old Trafford, and Rohit Sharma’s side will be out for vengeance on Wednesday when they host the Kiwis in a tight match in Mumbai.

New Zealand appeared to be world beaters after winning their first four games in India, but a string of losses and a slew of injuries to key players meant they only qualified for the semi-finals with their win over Sri Lanka in their final group game.

While Bhogle has long admired the way New Zealand plays cricket, he is skeptical that they will have enough firepower to upset India this time.

“New Zealand have struggled a lot in this tournament and have not beaten a team that has qualified for the semi-final, but they hadn’t in 2019 either,” Bhogle told reporters.

“The majority of what they have is probably good enough to make the semi-finals and final, and then they need a dash of inspiration at some point, which they may have lacked over the years.”

“I believe they are a top four Premier League (EPL) side.” They are most likely an Arsenal team under (Arsene) Wenger.

“Enough to make a point, but perhaps not quite enough.”

While Bhogle has long admired the way New Zealand plays cricket, he is skeptical that they will have enough firepower to upset India this time.

“New Zealand have struggled a lot in this tournament and have not beaten a team that has qualified for the semi-final, but they hadn’t in 2019 either,” Bhogle told reporters.

“The majority of what they have is probably good enough to make the semi-finals and final, and then they need a dash of inspiration at some point, which they may have lacked over the years.”

“I believe they are a top four Premier League (EPL) side.” They are most likely an Arsenal team under (Arsene) Wenger.

“Enough to make a point, but perhaps not quite enough.”

 

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