Before the tournament started, if you had asked me who the semi-final favourites are – my answer would have been Australia, England, South Africa and New Zealand. I am sure a lot of people’s reply would have been the same. An India Pakistan final would have never even crossed anyone’s mind at that stage.
But looking back, they have been the two best teams on display. Pakistan have been outstanding – they’ve beaten everyone, except India. And that too in a bowl out – after they tied the game. Shoaib Malik has led them from the front with his batting and people like Misbah-ul-Haq have supported him well. Their bowling also has a very good variety in Asif, Afridi, Gul and Tanvir – no wonder they are not missing Shoaib Akthar as Sambit Bal points out.
India have also looked good in the tournament. Their only loss has been to NZ in a match they should have won after a brilliant start. India dominated the next three games against England, South Africa and Australia. Unlike Australia, where the middle order has looked suspect, India’s middle order is thriving with some good batting from Yuvraj, Uthappa and Dhoni. Sehwag and Gambhir have also given the team a flying start in a couple of occasion. The Indian bowlers have also bowled well in the tournament and the fielding is a far cry from the shoddy display in England.
It’s going to be a good final and I am really looking forward to it…