ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 begins on 30th May and concludes on 14th July. England and Wales are the hosts of the grand cricket carnival. The biggest battle in 50-overs cricket will determine the world’s best team.
All the teams look strong on paper and are deserving to lift the trophy but squad strength alone doesn’t determine the final winners. There are countless other factors and these teams know that the challenge will be extreme.
Over the years great athletes have played the game. All those who laced a pair of boots to play professional cricket undoubtedly consider it an honor to represent their country in the World Cup stage.
Some best World Cup performers are immortalized by their countries. For instance, Pakistan’s World Cup winning captain Imran Khan became their Prime Minister and India’s World Cup hero Sachin Tendulkar is considered as a demigod in the country.
Many such greats have named their favorites to win this year’s World Cup. Their opinions carry a lot of weight as they are brilliant minds and possess great cricketing knowledge. This article looks at the World Cup favorites of five legendary cricket players.
#1 Sachin Tendulkar
The Master Blaster will always be popular around the world due to his achievements in international cricket. He is everything that a successful cricketer should be. It would take so many papers to pen down and detail all his achievements.
Sachin Tendulkar holds the record for most runs in the World Cup and also the most in the 2003 edition to name a few. Speaking about his favorite World Cup side this year, the legend has opined that his own country will seize the trophy.
The seemingly patriotic opinion is actually credible as team India has a well-balanced squad. Under Virat Kohli’s captaincy and MS Dhoni’s guidance, they have heavy chances. However, adapting to the conditions would be challenging.
#2 Ricky Ponting
Ricky Ponting is one of the best World Cup captains ever. The former Australian skipper has helped his team win the title for two consecutive times. Ponting also holds the record for most catches (28) in the tournament.
The Australian national hero, however, considers their Ashes rivals England as the favorites to win the showpiece event. Though the team holds no World Cup victory, he thinks that their home conditions and current form would favor them.
#3 Clive Lloyd
Clive Lloyd alongside Ponting is a double World Cup winner. He captained the Caribbean side to victories in the first two editions. Lloyd has the same perspective as Ponting. He too hopes that England would be the ultimate winners.
Lloyd said in an interview:
There is a strong wave in the UK that England will do well this time. No doubt they had done well in recent years. They are a good, balanced side. England will be a very tough competitor this time.
#4 Sir Vivian Richards
Sir Viv Richards is widely regarded as one of the greatest batsmen of all time. The West Indies legend was the first cricketer in ODI history to win twenty Man of the Match awards. In World Cup games, Richards was the first batsman to reach 1000 runs.
Richards also received a knighthood for his contributions to international cricket. This legendary cricketer has some favorites but he rates Pakistan highly due to their Champions Trophy win in England two years ago.
#5 AB de Villiers
AB de Villiers is one of the best cricketers in recent history. Many expected him to participate in the 2019 World Cup but he abruptly announced his retirement just a year before. The Proteas batsman has 25 Test and 22 ODI hundreds to his name.
Just like the multiple cricketing shots in his arsenal, Mr. 360 has various favorite teams on the mind. He considers India and England to be strong contenders while suggesting Australia’s five World Cup victories and Pakistan’s Champions Trophy win to be their advantage.