Sri Lanka's victory over Pakistan gave them the mantle of the world's best side; add in home advantage, the most balanced bowling attack in the competition and some of its most outstanding batsmen, and they are deserved favourites for the final. Their semi-final victory was steady, rather than dominant, with multiple contributors, and no real drama. That is a good sign, provided someone steps up further when they are really tested, which to a degree they have yet to been. Arguably, given England's troubles, and their comparative failures versus New Zealand and South Africa, Sri Lanka's only really impressive performance has been against the West Indies.
That does, and doesn't bode well for both teams. For the West Indies, the knowledge that they scored 129 without a contribution from Gayle or Pollard, and bowled badly, without Badree, means that they have plenty of room to make amends. Whether they can do so is another matter, they have, after all, really only won two matches in the tournament to date, but as I've emphasised throughout, there is a lot of randomness to go with skill in a T20. Their last win was proof they can win the trophy, if they can replicate the performance.
Australia turned ou to be exactly what everyone said they were all along. A team dependent on its top-3, ill-suited to slower wickets, with a flailing middle-order. To be fair, most teams need runs from their top-3. If they fail a team is normally behind on both runs and wickets, and T20 is a very hard game to come from behind in. Bailey showed great determination to keep going, with an innings as good as any in the tournament, but his bowlers, particularly his spinners left them far too much to do.
Pakistan leave somewhat anonymously. They recorded wins over all the southern hemisphere sides, and were beaten soundly by their fellow Asians. Their batsmen never seemed to have enough runs to provide a consistent challenge, and their bowling lacked the bite of previous tournament victories. In a tournament full of flawed sides they weren't far from making the final, but that applies to most sides that were here.
Idle Summers 7th October, 2012 00:46:23 [#]
T20 Ratings - WT20 Final Edition