Wednesday May 29, 2024

Bowlers with ‘X-factor’ will hold key in T20 World Cup, says Sammy

By Reuters
April 23, 2024
West Indies head coach Daren Sammy. — AFP File
West Indies head coach Daren Sammy. — AFP File

ST LUCIA: With T20 cricket becoming increasingly more batter-dominated, bowlers with the ‘X-factor’ could make all the difference in the World Cup in June, West Indies head coach Daren Sammy told Reuters.

The batting bias of cricket’s shortest format is evident in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL), where 200-plus scores have become a routine and 300 does not look impossible anymore.

Sammy, who captained West Indies to both their T20 World Cup titles, expected the batting carnage to continue in the June showpiece. “Bowlers have been under the pump,” the former all-rounder said in a telephone interview from his T20 World Cup trophy tour in Saint Lucia. “It’s not just the young bowlers, every single international bowler has been under pressure.

“Look at the IPL right now. Teams are scoring 200 and it’s not a safe total. It tells you that the batsmen are really dominating T20 cricket now.” While teams would pack their squads with power-hitters, Sammy reckoned bowlers with unconventional skills or action could prove crucial in the June 1-29 tournament.

“The difference will be some X-factor bowlers,” the 40-year-old said. “Whether that’s pace, whether that’s mystery spin - you’d need that in your armoury in order to defend totals or restrict opponents.”