England will play West Indies in an important
Super Eights game of the ICC World T20 and in all probabilities, the
winner will be have their chances to enter the semi-finals brightened greatly.
A lot would also depend on the India-England game that will be played on Sunday,
but for now, both teams will desperately want to win the game, and clinch that
elusive berth for the semi-finals.
The situation is such that if India beats England in the Sunday game, and West
Indies also beats England in this one, India will need to beat South Africa
in the last match to force the group into a three-way tie at the top. If, on
the other hand, India beats England, but England beats West Indies, an India-win
over South Africa will see both, India and South Africa through, while an India-loss
would have another three-way tie between West Indies, England and India for
the second spot!
However, the one thing that England would know is, that a loss
for them in this game, irrespective of the previous result, would keep them
out of the semi-finals and hence, this becomes a must-win game for them. Luke
Wright and Ravi Bopara had a great start to the tournament, but the pair looks
to have fizzled out in the last couple of matches. Kevin Pietersen, on
the other hand, needs to be applauded for playing with an injury, but he needs
to come off well for the hosts to be able to make an impression.
England had beaten the West Indies rather easily in the tests and the ODIs
immediately preceding this competition, but this could just be a different kettle
of fish altogether. The English bowling looks alright, without being too flashy,
and they will need to get rid of the top-order rather early before they make
The thing going for West Indies is that they aren't relying
on only Chris Gayle to fire. Lendl Simmons has already made a mark in
a couple of games, while, Dwayne Bravo's all-round skills are coming to the
fore as well.
The bowling has been quite impressive as well, with both Jerome
Taylor and Fidel Edwards making early inroads into the opposition. What England
could look at is having a restrained approach against these quick bowlers, and
try to go after the lesser medium pace bowlers like K.Pollard and Simmons, though,
the sense that I get is that Dwayne Smith may get his first game over
All in all, this seems to be an exciting game in the offing and the winner
could go a long way in trying to cement his place in the knock-out.