The biggest prize in cricket is up for grabs this summer as the top 10 teams battle it out in the 2019 ICC World Cup in England.
As fans, it’s not just watching the best players battle it out to look forward to. Fantasy cricket means you have the opportunity to get involved as well.
Dream11 is the official partner of the ICC tournament’s fantasy league. And we are with you every step of the way with our tips and picks to guide you through each round.
Here, we help you navigate through the fourth round which includes five matches.
Stock up on pacers
Good news from Old Trafford, the venue of two of the four games from round five suggests that the possibility of wash-outs is reducing by the hour. That said, sporadic showers and overcast conditions can still be expected.
The conditions are hence favourable to pacers who will attempt to make the most of swing. Naturally, stocking up on top pacers like Jofra Archer, Mohammad Amir and Bhuvaneshwar Kumar could work in your favour.
Whether the pacemen rattle the top-order or clean up the tail, points are guaranteed if the right players are chosen.
At this point, a reminder is due that the likes of Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Lasith Malinga should not be considered as Australia and Sri Lanka don’t have a game in this round following a double-game in round four.
Joe Root (10 credits)
A top three run-scorer of the 2019 World Cup will be up against tournament minnows Afghanistan, so this one is a no-brainer. The 28-year-old has notched up 279 runs in the tournament, scoring two centuries in the process.
Root opened the innings against West Indies and should he do it again against Afghanistan, he could go big regardless of which team bats first.
The part-time bowler also removed Shimron Hetmyer and Jason Holder in the same match, providing England the break they needed in the middle overs. With momentum on his side, Root could be a safe pick for this round.
Chris Gayle (10 credits)
Enroute to his 36(41) against England, veteran hitman Chris Gayle showed glimpses of his IPL form as he went after the English pacers. Bangladesh’s bowling attack could very well be the least threatening Gayle has faced in the tournament so far after testing himself against the likes of Pakistan and Australia.
While a thunderstorm could still rock the County Ground, the possibility of a Gayle-storm taking centre-stage is very much on the cards. Given openers David Warner and Aaron Finch made merry in the last game played on this ground, Gayle could replicate such an innings and achieve a strong score.
Kane Williamson (10.5 credits)
The Kiwis have not been tested by a competent bowling attack yet. A quick look at how the South Africa bowlers have performed in this World Cup suggests that this statement could hold true even at the end of this round.
Williamson scored an unbeaten 79 in New Zealand’s seven-wicket win over Afghanistan after registering 40 useful runs against Bangladesh in a well-earned win.
The Proteas are struggling in all departments at the moment and start as underdogs against the Kiwis. The 28-year-old can put on quite a show if he survives Kagiso Rabada’s opening spell.
Budget pick – KL Rahul (8.5 credits)
An Indo-Pak clash usually calls for a big innings from an Indian opener. With Shikhar Dhawan sidelined due to injury, KL Rahul is tipped to open the innings with Rohit Sharma.
The Mangaluru native made a case for his inclusion in the starting line-up with a well-crafted century against Bangladesh in a warm-up game after the openers failed to impress.
A technical batsman like Rahul could exactly be what the doctor ordered for India against a fiery Pakistan pace attack. At just 8.5 credits, Rahul could be a good budget pick.
Jofra Archer (8.5 credits)
Not taking anything away from tournament minnows Afghanistan, English pacer Jofra Archer is in fine form and could absolutely dismantle their top-order.
Having claimed nine wickets in the tournament already, Archer has lived up to the hype surrounding him after England announced their World Cup squad.
Afghanistan’s batting line-up displayed visible frailties against New Zealand’s pace attack and an in-form Archer could absolutely tear them apart.
With the conditions in his favour, expect Archer to be among the wickets in this fixture.
Jasprit Bumrah (9.5 credits)
If Australia opting to face Pakistan without a specialist spinner tells us anything about the pace-favouring conditions and the latter’s weaknesses, a bold claim can be made regarding Jasprit Bumrah’s importance as India take on Pakistan.
The 25-year-old delivered consistently in recent times and has arguably been the best bowler for the Men in Blue in this World Cup so far.
It wouldn’t be a stretch to expect Bumrah to wreak havoc with the new ball and provide India an early breakthrough.
Mohammad Amir (8.5 credits)
The leading wicket-taker of the tournament, when up against one of his favourite opposition, with conditions favouring him is a must-have.
Mohammad Amir has struck fear in the heart of openers with his bowling in this tournament and his five wickets against Australia has set the tone for this high-voltage clash.
Much like his opposite number Bumrah, the 27-year-old will relish the opportunity to handle the new ball. This could also be the first game where India’s tail will be tested and Amir will be prepared to make light work of them.
Mohammad Hafeez (8.5 credits)
One of the most experienced players in the Paksitan side, Mohammad Hafeez can threaten the Indians with ball and bat. After a positive showing against Australia, the 38-year-old will be eager about the prospect of bettering it against rivals India.
Hafeez provides stability in the middle-order and could come handy should Pakistan’s openers crumble against India’s pace attack.
The off-spinner brings an element of surprise with the white ball that can catch the opposition off-guard in the middle overs.
Hardik Pandya (9 credits)
A clean hitter of the ball, a brilliant fielder and a crucial addition to the bowling department – Hardik Pandya is the perfect definition of a Swiss army knife.
The 25-year-old came in at No4 against the Aussies and smashed a quick-fire 48 from just 27 balls, providing India with a crucial push in the middle overs.
Pandya’s mastery of slogging the ball could add about 25-30 runs in the death overs, something that has proved to be handy in the World Cup.
Should India endure a collapse while chasing, Pandya’s resourcefulness can come of aid in steadying the ship. Either way, the all-rounder could turn out to be a good pick for this round.
MS Dhoni (9 credits)
Having passed on the arm-band responsibilities to Virat Kohli, there is a sense of carefreeness and hence danger associated with MS Dhoni’s approach to the game.
The 2011 World Cup-winning skipper scored 113 from just 78 balls against Bangladesh in a warm-up game and has maintained the tempo with his strike-rate. Against the Aussies, Dhoni scored a quick-fire 27, firing at a strike-rate of about 200.
A calm and composed innings can be expected from the 37-year-old against the familiar opposition.
Also, Aussie keeper Alex Carey was involved in four dismissals in Pakistan’s innings Wednesday, with Pat Cummins at the other end on most occasions.
Should Bumrah hit that perfect line just outside the off-stump with his deliveries, Dhoni could be a busy man behind the stumps.
Captain: Jofra Archer
Vice-captain: Jasprit Bumrah
Sri Lanka won the toss and chose to bowl in their World Cup clash with Australia at the Oval.
Australia are aiming for a fourth win from their five matches and skipper Aaron Finch admitted he would have bowled if he had won the toss, with the overcast skies potentially offering Sri Lanka an early advantage.
“I haven’t won a toss for such a long time. I would have bowled first too. I think it will swing around so we’ll have to bat well,” Finch said.
Australia made one change to the side that beat Pakistan last Wednesday, with Jason Behrendorff replacing Nathan Coulter-Nile who was ruled out after feeling “a little bit sore”.
Who will prevail in London?
Find out by following the ball-by-ball commentary below.
We’ve witnessed some interesting wicket celebrations over the years and a few have made an appearance at the Cricket World Cup as well.
Imran Tahir’s trademark dash into the distance comes to mind as does Hasan Ali’s ‘explosion’ celebration while Sheldon Cottrell’s military salute has turned a few heads as well.
In contrast, Joe Root‘s little jig with his index fingers pointing to the sky after dismissing Shimron Hetmeyer at the Rose Bowl on Friday lacked imagination and was a rather awkward visual experience.
A boyish grin plastered across the face of the part-timer salvaged it though – along with the fact that he’d disrupted what was an increasingly threatening partnership between Hetmeyer and Nicholas Pooran.
The celebration was compared to one of Ian Botham’s in his heyday, although England’s legendary all-rounder seemed to retain some authority in his execution.
Joe Root in 2019 or Ian Botham in 1992 – who did it better? pic.twitter.com/Lc2wnNF8FF— ICC (@ICC) June 14, 2019
But flash has never come easily to Root who has always valued effectiveness over extravagance and with great success. Indeed, his mic-drop celebration after hitting the winning runs to bring up his century and clinch a series win over India at Headingley last year is something he immediately regretted.
“I’ve not heard the end of it, it was literally the most embarrassing thing I’ve done on a cricket field,” Root has said of the incident.
His man-of-the-match display to lead England to an eight-wicket win over West Indies on Friday though deserved an iconic celebration that Root clearly can’t be trusted with delivering.
After picking up the scalp of Hetmeyer to derail West Indies, he claimed the prized wicket of Jason Holder, using excellent variation to complete another caught and bowled. His batting masterclass in the second innings was a memorable one, scoring an unbeaten 100 in 94 deliveries – although he couldn’t be bothered with including a six in it.
The fact that he notched up his second ton of the tournament – he’s now the only England batsman with three World Cup hundreds – while opening the innings for the first time in his ODI career made the knock all the more impressive. Injuries to skipper Eoin Morgan and opener Jason Roy meant Root was promoted up the order where he faced a barrage of bouncers with the new ball, a tactic the Windies were rewarded for earlier in the tournament against Pakistan.
However, it was his opening partner Jonny Bairstow who was a little worse for wear after an Andre Russell delivery decked him as it crashed into his helmet. Root on the other hand set the tone early, pulling Oshane Thomas crisply towards the square-leg boundary for his first four.
He barely put a foot wrong throughout his innings, ensuring his change in position didn’t effect his extraordinary consistency. They don’t come more dependable than Root. He picked up a crucial wicket just when England needed it most and did the business wat the crease when two huge injuries should’ve left the batting order in disarray.
With Roy and Morgan expected to miss out in coming games, Root will have to step up and deliver. Fortunately, that’s what he does best. In a team packed with stars, he’s one of the biggest but doesn’t tend to shine as brightly as the rest.
Make no mistake, he doesn’t exactly qualify as an unsung hero. A batsman of his calibre simply can’t be cast under a shadow, especially when he delivers match-winning performances with remarkable regularity. However, a distinct lack of showmanship does help him maintain a relatively low profile.
And to think in ODIs this year his average nearly matches Virat Kohli’s (52.75 to 54.69) while boasting a higher runs-per-over rate than the Indian skipper (5.88 to 5.62).
Root isn’t flashy. He places a high price on his wicket and plays exquisite cricketing shots with minimum risk. In some cases that can come off as self-serving but in his, it’s all about guaranteeing runs for the team regardless of where he bats.
England have never ever had a more consistent player across the different formats than @root66 ... He is an fantastic player and one which all young players should be trying to copy .... #JustSaying #OnOn #CWC19— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) June 14, 2019
In the aftermath of his latest brilliant knock, former England captain Michael Vaughan took to Twitter and labelled him ‘the most consistent player England have ever had across formats’.
Having Root in the batting order is effectively runs on the board, it’s as simple as he is. He plays every ball on its merit, delivers when called upon and leaves the entertaining to the others.
He’s an average Joe. Except, he’s not.