What remains of Australia’s T20 World Cup squad in Australia will take off for the UAE today to begin five days of quarantine before getting into preparation. The T20 World Cup is the beginning of the most significant Australian summers in recent memory.
Australia has never won a T20 World Cup, with the closest being losing a final to England in 2010. The Aussies are going in with a very experienced T20 team, and this will be their best chance in bringing home a trophy.
After some disappointing performances in the West Indies and Bangladesh, many questioned the form of Australia. However, with two warm-up matches against New Zealand and India before the World Cup proper, Australia should find that next level to begin a winning campaign.
Aaron Finch will lead the country to his first T20 World Cup in the most challenging conditions seen in a long time. Pat Cummins hasn’t played any cricket since the IPL in April, while others such as Marcus Stoinis and Finch himself will be coming off recent injuries.
Finch’s knee injury has been the source of much speculation over the last month, with some even predicting that he may miss the World Cup. Finch wanted to reassure the public he would be leading the country.
“I’ve been batting for a couple of weeks and some modified running in the first three weeks. In the last couple of weeks, I’ve been fine; I’ve also had my biggest session in terms of fielding and running as well.” Finch said to the media on Wednesday ahead of departing for the World Cup.
David Warner has also been on the lips of many. His form recently hasn’t been great, with him even being dropped by his IPL franchise Sunrisers Hyderabad. However, Finch is backing him in to open for Australia.
“He’s one of the best players to have ever played the game for Australia. I have no doubt his preparation while he would’ve loved to have been playing. I know he’s still training away and will be good to go.”
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Finch was sure to touch on Steve Smith; many have suggested that he might not be in Australia’s best T20 team. Finch backed the star batter in and was clear that he would be in the first choice eleven.
“He will bat in the middle order, whether that’s anywhere from three to six. What were going to do is be really flexible through the middle of the game. There is a lot of power there, so he will definitely play in the middle order as a brilliant player of spin.”
Another of the big names, Glenn Maxwell, has been in excellent form over in the UAE for the IPL. Maxwell is now coming off three half-centuries in a row for Royal Challengers Bangalore and is proving himself to be a vital part of any Australian success.
“He looks to be hitting the ball beautifully, and he’s confident at the moment, as we know he’s the most destructive in the world when he’s up and going.
“He’s a world-class player, and he’s someone who has shown in World Cups in the past that he can win matches off his own bat. His bowling and fielding will also be incredibly important, so he’s a really important cog in our team.”
There has been some speculation on the extent of Marcus Stonis’ injury; however, Finch is confident he will be okay to play.
“On Stoinis has a little niggle at the moment but is still over there training and in that environment.”
Australia hasn’t performed at their best in T20 as of late. Finch was the first to acknowledge this but is still confident of where the squad is at.
“It’s no secret Australia hasn’t performed at its best in world T20’s. It’s a great opportunity; I feel as if our squad is good enough to win the World Cup.
“We don’t look too much into what others are saying though we are really confident in the squad we’ve got,” Finch added
Australia’s T20 World Cup Squad
Aaron Finch (C), Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins (VC), Josh Hazlewood, Josh Inglis, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa.
Reserves: Dan Christian, Nathan Ellis, and Daniel Sams.
Australia will now fly to the UAE before playing two warm-up matches. The countries first match at the World Cup will be against South Africa on the 23rd of October.
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