ICC T20 World Cup--India vs Afghanistan: Players to watch out for...

The men in blue will play their first match in the ICC T20 World Cup when they will take on Afghanistan in their first league match at Colombo. Indian team is one of the favorites to lift the trophy and beating Afghanistan shouldn’t be much of a problem for them, but it is T20 cricket and Dhoni and his men will know that if ever there is a format which cannot be trusted than it is this format.

Indian team had some good practice coming into the match. They played two matches, one won and lost the other. The big positive for India will be their middle-order batting. Indian openers are struggling and on both the occasions the middle-order batsmen saved their neck. But it is a problem that is temporary because both Indian openers are class players.

The major problem for Dhoni will be the bowling department. Dhoni has openly admitted that bowling is the team’s week point and they will have to do something about it. Against Pakistan, Indian bowlers suffered, they did not had any answers to the aggression shown by the Pakistani batsmen.

For Afghanistan it is an opportunity to announce themselves at the biggest stage. No performance goes unnoticed when you play against India and all the Afghan players will know that. Their captain has said that his team has the ability to pull up a couple of surprises. T20 format provides good opportunities to the lesser teams to make a mark.

Let’s have a look at some of the key players from either sides:


Virat Kohli: The ICC ODI player of the year is in sensational form, he is playing back to back match winning innings and is dismantling every bowling attack that comes his way. He in the last warm-up match played a sensational innings which should have got India over the line, but some poor bowling from Indian bowlers ensured that his efforts go in vain.

Yuvraj Singh: This is a perfect opportunity for Yuvraj to get back in some run-scoring form. The road will only get tougher for the Indians and it is vital that Yuvraj is at his best. Dhoni might just send Yuvraj up the order so that he can have a proper bat and can get some runs under his belt against an ordinary Afghanistan bowling attack.

Harbhajan Singh: Like Yuvraj, Harbhajan Singh too need a good game. He went for 10 runs an over against Pakistan in the last practice match and that is not good for him. He needs to be in wicket-taking form and this match is very crucial for him.

Zaheer Khan: He is India’s number one bowler but he sure is not bowling like one. Zaheer has been looking a bit out of sorts since his comeback against New Zealand in the home Test series. He is missing that nip and has struggled to control batsmen in shorter formats. He has been a great bowler for India and Zaheer will know that he has to start performing if India has to go the distance.


Mohammad Shahzad: He is the most successful Afghani batsmen in the T20 format, he has a very good batting average of 31 with a health strike rate of 112. Afghanistan will need all their big players to be at their best and he is surely one of them.

Samiullah Shenwari: He is the biggest striker in the Afghanistan team. His strike rate of 132 is the highest by a big margin. He will be a key player for them in this match.

Mohammad Nabi: He is a pretty effective off-spinner and will like the Sri Lankan conditions. He is also quite handy with the bat.  

By Indian Sports News Network