Can India Crush the English Cricket Spirit: The IPL season is now a distant memory, with the cricket landscape now tilting slowly but surely towards looking ahead to the 2019 Cricket World Cup, which will take place in England and Wales. As interest and speculation about who will win the tournament starts to heat up, one of the more interesting situations at the moment seems to be the fact that the host nation not only look set to be amongst the favorites for glory due to their understanding of the pitches and the wickets, but also because they have proved themselves capable of thriving under pressure.
If you need further convincing of this, bear in mind that England have just defeated Australia 6-0 in a combined one day and T20 format clash. Whitewashing your biggest rival is always going to boost morale, but the most impressive aspect of winning against a younger Australian team was the way the England side managed to fight back when they seemed to be the underdogs.
A lion that is roaring loudly
Indeed, in both the first and last games of the one-day series, the Australian team seemed to be in the ascendency, that was until some superb individual performances, like the one in the final ODI match by Jos Buttler, came to the fore. Buttler, who also shone recently in the IPL, embodies the spirit and skill that can help the English snatch unlikely victories and which has helped them to push their way to supremacy in the cricket betting odds – they’re 9/4 to win the World Cup in 2019.
That’s all well and good, but positive vibes aside, perhaps the biggest test of England’s tag of favorites will come in the form of their upcoming matches against a very strong Indian side.
Such is the determination of the Indian side to win the tournament that star players such as Virat Kholi have tried to get to the UK in order to become accustomed to the very different English conditions. This level of dedication will certainly help the Indian team in their bid to overcome the odds and finish up as tournament champions.
Not just about momentum
It has been widely speculated that an Indian series win would help to upset the momentum that is driving the English team forward and would help to create a narrative which suggests that the team has peaked too early. While this makes for a great headline, getting game time in the UK for India really is the main story to focus on ahead of the action.
This means that news headlines, such as the fact that Bumrah won’t be taking part in the tour, are far more important than any written about the series, especially if it proves to be a tight affair. This kind of series, should it pan out to be a competitive affair, will, of course, be exciting for fans, but all it will do is simply reinforce the fact that they are clearly the top two teams coming into the tournament.
Getting used to wickets at grounds like the Rose Bowl, the Oval and Trent Bridge is going to be far more valuable for the top teams in world cricket than anything else as the days and weeks tick by in the build-up to the World Cup.
In light of this, England fans should rest easy and accept that enjoying the cricket is far more important than trying to read anything into a series that should be more entertaining than it is telling.