New Delhi [India], October 23 (ANI): After 12 matches in the first round, four teams have made their way to the Super 12 stages of the ICC Men's T20 World Cup, and now the time is here where the real action commences.
Sri Lanka and Namibia qualified from Group A while Scotland and Bangladesh have entered the next stage from Group B. Namibia and Scotland will lock horns against India, Pakistan, New Zealand, and Afghanistan while Sri Lanka and Bangladesh have made the group featuring England, West Indies, Australia and South Africa even tougher.
The Super 12 stage commences later on Saturday with South Africa and Australia locking horns at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi. Later in the day, England will square off against West Indies in Dubai.
The most anticipated encounter of the Super 12 stage will be played on Sunday between arch-rivals India and Pakistan. It will be after two years that these two teams will battle it out on the cricket field, after having last played in the ICC Men's 50-over World Cup in 2019.
Skipper Virat Kohli has made this tournament his own over the past two editions, being crowned Player of the Tournament both times. With an average in excess of 50 in the format, the Indian skipper will be at the top of opposition plans whenever they take on the Men in Blue. If he gets going, an already impressive Indian team will look to go all the way this time around.
On the other hand, Pakistan captain Babar Azam will be tasked with the responsibility of scoring the majority of the runs along with other experienced campaigners Mohammad Hafeez and Mohammad Rizwan. He will have to bring his A-game in terms of tactics on the field while manoeuvring his bowlers. Currently ranked at the second spot in the T20I rankings for batters, Babar boasts a highly impressive record in the shortest format of the game.
The Super 12 stage will get underway in Abu Dhabi with the Group 1 contest between Australia and South Africa. This will be followed up with a clash between England and West Indies in Dubai.
First Round qualifiers Sri Lanka and Bangladesh will then start their Super 12 campaign on Sunday at Sharjah. Group 2 will commence with a heavyweight clash between India and Pakistan in Dubai on Sunday
Pakistan then take on New Zealand in Sharjah on October 26, in a tough start for the 2009 champions. Afghanistan will begin its campaign on October 25 at Sharjah, taking on First Round Group B winners Scotland.
Group 1 will conclude on November 6 with matches between Australia and West Indies in Abu Dhabi, and England and South Africa in Sharjah. Group 2 will conclude on November 8, with India taking on Namibia.
A win in the Super 12 stage matches will give teams two points, if the game ends in a tie, no result or abandoned, then both the teams will get one point each. (ANI)