Former Sri Lanka spinner Muttiah Muralitharan opined that there is no team which is the most favourite to win the upcoming T20 World Cup.
Heading into the tournament, which will be played in Oman and UAE, the legendary cricketer feels all the top teams have an equal chance of winning the title. The T20 World Cup was to be played in India earlier but was shifted to the UAE considering the covid-19 scare, which had already disrupted the IPL 2021.
India, West Indies, and England are considered to be the title contenders while Pakistan, Australia are not far behind. Bangladesh and Afghanistan would also be raring to spring up some surprises.
“The most exciting thing about the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 is that there are no clear favourites. Coming into the competition in the United Arab Emirates and Oman, it feels like there is no standout side and as a result, any one of a large number of teams could end up lifting the trophy,” Muttiah Muralitharan said in an ICC column.
Sri Lanka have not played good enough cricket: Muttiah Muralitharan
Muttiah Muralitharan expressed disappointment over the state of Sri Lankan cricket. The 2014 T20 World Cup champions will have to play in a Qualifying Round, starting 17 October, and will need to qualify to proceed to the Super 12 stage.
The 49-year-old admitted that the Lankan team hasn’t been up to the mark in the past few years. But, he gained confidence in the fact that the side has some quality spinners.
“From a Sri Lankan perspective, the team will have to go through qualifying in the first round. The team has gone down in the last five or six years and it’s the first time in our history that it has happened to us. Frankly speaking, we were not good enough, and have not played good enough cricket which is why we are in this position. But the team has capable players who can reach the Super 12s and have an impact, but first they have to qualify.
“The spinners are very good, whereas the batting is a little bit weaker, but if they can step up and manage decent totals, then the bowlers can defend them. If they make it through, I think they will upset a few teams,” Muttiah Muralitharan added.
Sri Lanka is clubbed with Ireland, Netherlands, and Namibia in Group A of Round 1. They take on Namibia in their opening encounter on 18th in Abu Dhabi.