Indian commentator Harsha Bhogle picked his team of the tournament for the T20 World Cup, which Australia won on November 14 by defeating New Zealand in the decisive clash. Bhogle picked three players from Pakistan, two each from England, South Africa, Sri Lanka, while one from Namibia, with no Indian managing to make space.
He picked Pakistan skipper Babar Azam to open alongside England’s Jos Buttler, the latter preferred in a “shootout” with Mohammad Rizwan due to his X-factor. The middle-order had Sri Lanka’s Charith Asalanka slotted at No. 3, followed by South Africa’s Aiden Markram, Pakistan’s Shoaib Malik, while Bhogle opted for three all-rounders in England’s Moeen Ali, Sri Lanka’s Wanindu Hasaranga and the lone player from an associate nation in his XI, Namibia’s David Wiese.
“This is up for performances up to the semi-final stage so that it’s a level playing field for everybody,” Bhogle said to Cricbuzz. “Number one is the easiest pick, Babar Azam. He would be the first pick in anyone’s team.”
“Jos Buttler was the enforcer at the top. It was a straight shootout between Mohammad Rizwan and Buttler, but Buttler’s game had that extra X-factor about it,” Bhogle reasoned. He lauded Asalanka for his brilliant performances at the No. 3 spot, which were enough for him to occupy that spot ahead of anyone else.
“A very fine Sri Lankan batsman, I am looking forward to seeing him a lot more. Charith Asalanka is one of the reasons why Sri Lanka could be looked at as tomorrow’s team in this tournament.”
“At No. 4, the most difficult batting position in T20 cricket, and Aiden Markram just owned it. The way he played those big, bold shots was a revelation. Bhogle chose Shoaib Malik citing his finishing capabilities on display for Pakistan during the tournament. “I don’t need to look too much for the No. 6 spot. Moeen Ali is wonderfully versatile and an easy pick in the spot.”
Bhogle opted for a threatening pace attack, with Pakistan left-arm pacer Shaheen Afridi slotted alongside Australia’s Josh Hazlewood and South African quick Anrich Nortje.
Harsha Bhogle’s Team of the Tournament: Babar Azam, Jos Buttler, Charith Asalanka, Aiden Markram, Shoaib Malik, Moeen Ali, Wanindu Hasaranga, David Wiese, Shaheen Afridi, Josh Hazlewood, Anrich Nortje