This post is written by Laksh Fomra, Manager – Marketing & Communications at Haptik.
The advent of this splendid tournament came to exist exactly 40 years ago and much has changed since then… Some editions of the World Cup saw dominant victories, while some saw upsets and the others witnessed the rise of cricketing nations on the map. The 2015 edition is just around the corner, and as we gear up to follow the battle Down Under, at Haptik we couldn’t be more excited.
To begin with, here is quick download of the play-off groups which is fairly interesting as both hosting nations have landed themselves in the same pool.
Now going into every World Cup I have my own Top 4 which are generally a mix of traditional favourites & unconventional gut instinct. This year, I pick these teams in the same order of favorites.
1. South Africa – Chokers, No More?
For me, South Africa are walking into the World Cup with stomping authority. No visible injury threats, solid form across the playing eleven. It was high time The Proteas got their due, and 2015 might just be their maiden World Cup win.
2. Australia – Home Advantage
Ranked No. 1 in the world, playing at home and just the simple fact that you can’t ignore the Aussies in a World Cup makes them a definite front runner for 2015. Couple that with an extremely aggressive bowling & batting line up, Australia are walking in confident with 7 ODI wins straight over South Africa, England & India.
3. New Zealand – The Underdogs
One cricketing nation that’s won hearts over the last two months are the Men in Black. I had to put them third on the list because of the way they have gained momentum entering the tournament. While Brendon McCullum needs to be their hero, their line-up has a bunch of Match Winners. It’ll be interesting to see how they fair against co-hosts Australia, but don’t rule these dark horses out just as yet.
4. India – #WeWontGiveItBack
That is just easier said than done, isn’t it? By the looks of it, India’s just two things going into this World Cup –
- Under-Pressure (Though Capt. MS Dhoni won’t accept it) &
- One Match Winning Bowler Short!
But we are still defending champions and if 1983 was something to go by, the bullish Indian in me hopes there is a chance we are going to live up to that title.
5. England – An Outside Chance
I decided to put England on this list, just in case India messes up (which according to everybody is a very high possibility) but after lots of turbulence in the dressing room, the Englishmen have finally started to find their groove though they rely heavily on their man-of-the-hour James Anderson to deliver.
With this said, World Cups have always seem some unsettling upsets. England lost to Ireland in the last edition, while Bangladesh sent India tossing out in the Group stages of 2007 and Kenya made it to the semi-finals in 2003. That’s one surprise each cup beholds, which definitely makes this one very very exciting as well. Starting the 14th of February until the 29th of March it’s 45 days of blissful cricket!
But what’s not so exciting are the timings of the games. The matches hosted by New Zealand would begin at 3 am or 6 am IST, while most Australia hosted games would begin at either 6 am or 9 am IST. So you’ll either be well in to storing in bed, or just rushing to get to work. But on the brighter side 4 of India’s group stage games are on Saturday & Sunday, though the game against West Indies is on a Friday and Ireland on a Tuesday and start either at 9 am or 12 pm IST.
So it might be a good time to utilise those holidays you saved up on, and fire up the popcorn in your jammies on Match Day!
Reminder in Public Interest:
Hope you guys have activated the various Sports Pack or HD Cable Packs for watching the match like a king! In case you’re worried that it might upset your monthly budget, don’t fret, just compare various packs with Komparify on Haptik. Find the best one for you, and get the recharge done before the 14th of February with a simple message. Follow this link to download – haptik.co/komparify
P.S – We have a Big Announcement coming up for you guys around the Cricket World Cup. If you’re a fanatic, it’s time you started squealing with anticipation. Watch this space for more. We announce on the 13th of February, 2014!