Just days from now, cricket fans around the globe will turn their attention to England as the Cricket Word Cup 2019 gets underway. Below we have provided an overview of the tournament, providing you with the latest matches, betting odds and analysis:
Dates: 30th May – 14th July
The action gets underway on 30th May, when England take on South Africa at The Oval, London. It is, of course, in the ODI format, with games beginning at 10.30am UK, so early afternoon for viewers in India and late evening for those in Australia. The group stage will run right through until 6th July, with the semi-finals on 9th and 11th July and the Final at Lord’s on 14th July.
10 cricket test nations will take part in the Cricket World Cup: England, Australia, India, South Africa, Pakistan, Afghanistan, West Indies, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe and New Zealand.
The following venues will host games in England and Wales: Lord’s, The Oval (both London), Old Trafford (Manchester), Edgbaston (Birmingham), Headingly (Leeds), County Ground (Taunton), Trent Bridge (Nottingham), Rose Bowl (Southampton), Bristol County Ground (Bristol), Sophia Gardens (Cardiff) and Riverside Ground (Chester-le-Street).
Each of the 10 qualified teams will play nine matches each in a ‘round-robin’ format, with the four top teams qualifying for the semi-finals. Top matches in the group stage include: Australia vs India (9th June, The Oval), India vs Pakistan (16th June, Old Trafford), England vs Australia (25th June, Lord’s) and England vs India (30th June, Edgbaston).
According to freebets.co.uk, England are betting favourites to win their first Cricket World Cup, with a best price of 9/4 coming from Bet365. India are just behind at 11/4, with defending champions Australia at 4/1. Much will be made of England’s home advantage, but it will be no surprise if either India or Australia end up as champions.
There will be plenty of support for New Zealand and South Africa (both 10/1), as well as Pakistan at 14/1. However, the surprise team might just be the much-improved West Indies, who have a best betting price of 16/1 at Betway. It’s now 40 years since ‘The Windies’ won the tournament, and a run to the latter stages is not beyond them this time.
What to Look Out For
According to the legendary West Indies captain, Clive Lloyd, the flat playing surfaces in England will make it difficult for bowlers, allowing for a big opportunity for all-rounders: Lloyd said: “From Afghanistan to England, or from India to West Indies, every team is blessed with top-class all-rounders….That’s why I believe it will be an all-rounders’ World Cup.”
The Stars of the Show – Batsmen
Virat Kohli is the consensus pick (given odds of about 8/1) to be the top batsman at the World Cup. Others in contention include England’s Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow, South Africa’s Jason Roy, and former Australia captain David Warner.
The Stars of the Show – Bowlers
There isn’t a firm favourite to be top bowler at the World Cup, but you can expect the likes of England’s Adil Rashid, Australia’s Mitchell Starc and India’s Jasprit Bumrah will be in the mix. Starc gained the award at the last World Cup, and the Australian is given odds of 16/1 to do the same in this tournament.