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West Indies, England clash in potentially tight contest

 MUMBAI, March 15: With a plethora of players plying their trade in professional leagues around the world, West Indies will take on a well-balanced England side in what could be a potentially close Super 10 Group 1 fixture of the ICC World Twenty20 here tomorrow.The Caribbean charmers, who clinched the title in 2012, have a string of all-round cricketers to bank upon as they seek to establish themselves again among the top-notch teams in the shortest format of the game.

England, on the other hand, have the wherewithal to stop the marauders from the West Indies to continue their pursuit of a second World T20 crown after establishing themselves as the champions in 2010.

Both the sides go into the match after victories in warm-up games. While West Indies lost to India but managed to stun Australia, England won both their matches against New Zealand and Mumbai.

West Indies, led by Darren Sammy, who is among the players who can bat and bowl effectively alongside Dwayne Bravo and Andre Russell, comes into the game with a 5-4 advantage over England in head-to-head contests that includes a 3-3 record in World T20 encounters.

It all may boil down to how the two teams play against the spin bowlers on a Wankhede Stadium track that could offer some turn and bounce.

England have a spinning trio – leg spinner Adil Rashid, off spinner Moeen Ali and uncapped Hampshire all rounder Liam Dawson who bowls left-arm spin.

With West Indian mystery spinner Sunil Narine, who has pulled out, not present to trouble the rival batsmen with his unorthodox stuff, England’s spin attack looks better than West Indies spin quartet of Samuel Badree, left-arm slow Sulieman Benn and off spinners Marlon Samuels and Chris Gayle.

West Indies batting will be led by the explosive Gayle but they will certainly miss the services of all-rounder Kieron Pollard, opener Lendl and Darren Bravo.

England’s batting line-up features captain Eoin Morgan, Joe Root, Ben Strokes and Jos Buttler.

England had lost their previous two T20 games last month to South Africa prior to the tournament while West Indies, who practised in Dubai for two weeks before reaching India, had drawn 1-1 against Sri Lanka in November last year.

Though West Indies have been less than impressive in Tests and ODIs of late, they remain a top T20 side and were the semifinalists two years ago in the last edition held at Bangladesh. – PTI


West Indies

Darren Sammy (capt), Samuel Badree, Sulieman Benn, Carlos Brathwaite, Dwayne Bravo, Johnson Charles, Andre Fletcher, Chris Gayle, Jason Holder, Evin Lewis, Ashley Nurse, Denesh Ramdin, Andre Russell, Marlon Samuels, Jerome Taylor.


Jason Roy, James Vince, Alex Hales, Joe Root, Moeen Ali, Eoin Morgan (capt), Jos Buttler (wk), Ben Stokes, Sam Billings, Chris Woakes, David Willey, Liam Plunkett, Reece Topley, Chris Jordan, Adil Rashid, Liam Dawson.


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