Cricket Interviews

I think it would be South Africa vs Australia final in T20 World Cup : Monty Panesar [Exclusive Interview]

As exciting as the IPL 2024 is shaping up to be, it’s the T20 World Cup that’s capturing everyone’s attention. The ICC T20 World Cup is set to make a grand debut in the USA and will return to the West Indies for the first time since 2010.

This promises to be a spectacular event for cricket fans around the globe. The tournament will kick off on June 1 and it comes to a close on June 29. Team India won the inaugural edition of the T20 World Cup in 2007. West Indies and England are the joint-most successful teams in the competition as both teams won two titles apiece.

Australia, Sri Lanka and Pakistan won a trophy apiece. Meanwhile, former England international, Monty Panesar opened up in an exclusive conversation with CricBouncer. In the conversation, he spoke about the impact rule in IPL that stirred controversy in recent weeks.

Furthermore, he opened up the names of teams that will make it to the semi-finals of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 before going on to pick the surprise finalist for the marquee event. The former left-arm spinner echoed his thoughts on how England will approach the T20 World Cup without their experienced all-rounder Ben Stokes.

During the ongoing IPL, all Indian wicketkeeper-batters namely KL Rahul, Sanju Samson, Dinesh Karthik and Rishabh Pant have been chipping in with impactful performances. Monty Panesar also revealed his choice for India’s wicketkeeper for the T20 World Cup.

Take a glimpse at a few excerpts from Monty Panesar’s exclusive interview:

1. The impact rule in IPL has stirred controversy in recent weeks. What are your views on the rule? Are you in favour or against it?

I think the impact rule is a good thing because what it does it keeps the games much closer than we have seen. Some of the games have been very exciting in high scoring matches and one of the reasons is because of the impact rules. So I do believe that keeping the impact rule will allow the fans to keep watching the game for longer and also not switch off. So if the impact rule is there, the games are much more closer and get to the 19th of the 18th over rather than people just switching off after 10 or 11 overs.

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2. As the T20 World Cup approaches, which four teams do you think will make it into the semis? Also, name your finalists and the ultimate winner.

Yeah, as the World Cup T20 approaches, the four teams I think are going to make it into the semi-finals will be England, India, Pakistan and Australia. I think they look, you know, very, very strong. Maybe South Africa as well, could be South Africa, but between South Africa and Pakistan. So I think they’ll be the four strongest teams. And I think the finalists probably be, I think South Africa could be a surprise finalist for me. I think Australia will definitely could get there as well. India will have to play really well in the semi-finals if they do get there to be the ultimate winner. But I think at the moment, looking in the IPL and the players are performing, I think it would be South Africa vs Australia final, because it’s the South African batsmen are doing really well. And also the Australian batsmen, the way they’ve just hit power hitting and the strike is unbelievable. So I think South Africa vs Australia’s final.

3. Do you think England will be affected by Ben Stokes’ absence in the T20 World Cup?

I don’t think England will be affected by Ben Stokes. I think the best cricket we’ve seen him in the T20s, you know, and he’s brilliant. But with the injury and also the demand of captaincy, I think England have moved on nicely. You know, we see Johnny Bairstow do really well, Jos Buttler. Paul Jackson did an amazing 100 the other day. Sam Curran, you know, captaining the team quite well.

That’s going to help, you know, with England when it comes to leadership stuff. So I think England look in a really good place at the moment, you know. But the World Cup is a big thing, you know. Sometimes you can play really well on the pitches in India, but then you don’t know how the pitches will be in the West Indies. So on recent form, I think England haven’t done so well. So they will have to play really well like they are right now. And some of the players that are performing in the IPL will have to carry that form into the T20 World Cup.

4. Team India have plenty of options to pick from in the wicketkeeper group. Whom do you think they should select as the first choice and why?

Well, I think the first choice wicketkeeper is going to probably be Rishabh Pant because of the excitement that he brings in the form he’s in. I think the second wicketkeeper should be Dinesh Karthik and in fact he’s been providing as a finisher role, he’s done really really well. So I think both of them should definitely be in the World Cup and you know if Rishabh Pant isn’t on great form when the World Cup starts and Dinesh Karthik is doing really well as a finisher, I think Dinesh Karthik should be the first choice in my opinion because he’s performing like it’s unbelievable how much form he’s done. So on form right now I’ll probably go for Dinesh Karthik. I think Dinesh Karthik should be included in the World Cup squad.

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