The 12th edition of the World Cup is all set to commence on the 30th of May. The round-robin format where each team gets nine matches to play gives a fair chance to all the sides to have a shot at the coveted trophy. According to experts, the three strong contenders to lift the trophy are hosts England, India and Australia.
South Africa and New Zealand are certainly are dark horses of this competition while the likes of Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, and the West Indies can effect few upsets and hinder the progress of other teams.
All the teams have indeed put in the hard effort, and the squad of 15 players for each side was declared considering the ideal team combination. Each player would be keen on showing his prowess for this showpiece event.
This article talks about three such cricketers, whose below par performance in the World Cup might result in their ODI careers coming to a close.
#1 Nathan Lyon (Australia)
Australian spinner Nathan Lyon is considered to be a specialist bowler in Test cricket. But in the fifty over format, Nathan Lyon has had a start-stop career. After having made his debut in 2012, Lyon has just managed to play just 25 ODIs.
After being roped into the team this year, Lyon has performed well in both the ODI series against India and Pakistan. This year, he has played 10 matches and picked up 8 wickets at an economy rate of 4.91.
Australia would be heavily reliant on Nathan Lyon, especially in the middle overs in order to provide crucial breakthroughs to the team.
#2 Hashim Amla (South Africa)
Hashim Amla has been the bedrock of the South African batting line up for close to a decade. But in 2018, the 36-year-old had been patchy with the bat. He scored just 315 runs in 11 matches at a poor average of 28.64 and the highest score being 71.
It is truly a rarity that a batsman like Hashim Amla who has scored heaps of runs in different conditions and, against varied bowling attacks, would find himself in a spot to bother about his place in the team.
He would be keen on making amends for his dismal performance in 2018 by playing a few match-winning knocks in the World Cup. If he fails to make a significant contribution then, there are a lot of promising batsmen such as Aiden Markram, Reeza Hendricks and Rassie van der Dussen who are ready to cement their place in the team at his expense.
#3 Dinesh Karthik (India)
Dinesh Karthik who has been performing well as a finisher in T20s has earned himself a place in the team because of his vast experience. In a career spanning close to fifteen years, Karthik has managed to don the Indian colors for just 91 times. For a large part of his career, Karthik has been shadowed by the legendary Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
After his heroics with the bat in the Nidahas Trophy final, Karthik earned a long-awaited call-up into the ODI team. He batted at the crucial number 4 spot
But his joy was short lived as selectors drafted in other players such as Ambati Rayudu and Rishabh Pant into the team. Since they failed to cash in on their opportunities, he got another lifeline and earned himself a place in the World Cup squad.
Though he is included as a reserve wicketkeeper, Karthik could be handy with the bat. However, his record in ODIs in England is not impressive, with him averaging just 22.14 in 13 matches.
The World Cup is the final opportunity for Karthik to prove his mettle that he is the man for big occasions. Otherwise, there is a high possibility that it will be curtains down for DK as the young and exciting Rishabh Pant is waiting in the wings.
Originally Published by sportskeeda.com