As the ICC World Cup 2019 goes underway in England, the talks have begun already on who would be the likely team to lift the coveted trophy. England, who haven’t won the ODI World Cup yet, has been considered tournament favorites for a while now. They have a reliable team which has been in splendid form over the last couple of years. And playing at home gives them a massive advantage which they would be keen to take full use of.
It rather strange that since the inception of the World Cup way back in 1975, England hasn’t won the trophy a single time. They are, after all, the inventors of the game, and should have been able to leave some stamp at the all-important World Cup. That has not been the case thus far, unfortunately. They have played in the finals thrice and have been beaten each time.
Will things finally change in the 2019 edition? One hopes so. The ODI World Cup desperately needs a new winner to hold the trophy and begin a new era in world cricket. Australia has dominated the stage comprehensively for over a decade and has won four of the last five World Cup trophies. India went on to win the 2011 edition and became the third team to win the World Cup more than once.
Among the top teams, it is only England, New Zealand and South Africa who have failed to bring their best at the World Cup and clinch the trophy. From these three, it is England which looks like the most likely to have the best chance of winning the cup this time. And it will be a massive moment in world cricket if that does happen.
Former Australian speedster Brett Lee certainly believes the same. “It would be huge for Australia to do it again, but I must say it would be great for England to win it. There will be big crowds at the World Cup, and they will only get more and more fervent if the home team does well,” Lee was quoted as saying at the Opening Ceremony in the shadow of Buckingham Palace.
“I think England probably needs that energy back into cricket, the energy we saw in the 2005 Ashes. I did an interview the other day and spoke for an hour about the 2005 Ashes. I still say it’s the favorite series I’ve ever played in. I loved every single moment of it. It would be good for England if they won, and it’s not easy for an Aussie to say that!” Lee added.
Coming from a passionate Australian, these words do mean a lot. And they also illustrate how the cricketing community is rallying behind England this time to bring the trophy home. This is the best opportunity England has had at winning the cup in decades. If Eoin Morgan’s men to go on to achieve glory, then it may well pave the way for a new phase of dominance in world cricket and the dawn of a new England that can take everyone by surprise.