Rated a ridiculously close game, England probably have the better form, although Sri Lanka can say they have only been defeated by a red-hot Australia, whereas England lost their rain-affected match against the West Indies. England's bowling would appear to hold a slight edge, though it is undoubtedly over-performing to date. Sri Lanka's batting likewise, but until the spectacular finish against India it had ben struggling. Ultimately it may come down to the fielding, in which case I'll lean towards England.
The enigmatic Pakistan have scraped their way through both stages without really impressing anyone. Most observers, recalling the 1992 and 2009 World Cups will take that as a sign that they will turn it on in the games that count to win it all. Both those teams were superior to that playing here however, and if any team has been immune to Pakistan brilliance it has been Australia. Luck will naturally play a part, but to the extent that one team has been better than every other in this tournament, it is clear which team that is.
Leave the tournament with a miserable record, having beaten only New Zealand and Afghanistan. The batting, considered one of the most powerful in the tournament never flexed its muscles, while the bowling failed to contain sides capable of handling Steyn and Morkel's pace. As usual, their rating flatters to deceive.
Can be considered unlucky not to progress, given they defeated two of the semi-finalists, but the close nature of their wins counted against them. Are a young and improving side with a natural game suited to this format. Will move up the rankings.
Apparently the ratings don't lie. India aren't very good. The blame seems to have fallen on their batsmen and their inability to put away short deliveries, but that need would be lessened if their bowling (and their fielding) was leaking fewer runs. Perhaps the most important factor however is the lack of international standard cricket that India had played prior to the tournament.
The same story for the West Indies. Not playing to their potential and seemingly lacking hunger. The greater problem is an over-reliance on Gayle for runs, and a weak bowling attack. Their all-rounders are explosive match-winners, but the base of runs was never their for the explosion to occur.
Idle Summers 14th May, 2010 09:11:23 [#]