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All Time Great Championship: Could Have Been T20 Heroes

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  • Wilted
    Game 1: England vs India
    England XI: J Hobbs, W Grace, G Hick, F Woolley, A Lamb, A Stewart+, I Botham, T Greig*, F Trueman, B Willis, D Underwood
    India XI: S Ganguly, A Jadeja, V Kambli, M Azharuddin, A Malhorta, V Mankad, K Dev*, V Yadav+, J Srinath, B Bedi, D Doshi
    England won the toss and elected to bowl.

    Willis was given the honour of bowling the first ball of the tournament to Ganguly, which was delicately pushed behind point for a single. Trueman opened up at the other end and the opening bowlers had leaked just eight runs from the first two overs. Caught off-guard by a shorter delivery, Jadeja skied Willis to mid-on for the first wicket of the tournament. After four overs, Kambli flicked a straight ball off his pads for the first 4 but became Willis' second victim a ball later. India were 2-30 at the end of the six-over powerplay and were already looking wounded. Ganguly and Malhotra steadied things in terms of falling wickets but struggled to find the boundary and going for a run rate above a run per ball. Spin bowlers, Underwood and Woolley were unplayable, going for more dots balls than runs. Dev took on the role of aggressive stroke maker while Ganguly remained unbeaten as the Indians went into the final overs still scoring at under a run per ball. The runs came to a stop once Dev was dismissed and it took Ganguly the full 20 overs to score an unbeaten 50.

    India 5-119

    Despite needing to score at just six an over to win, Hobbs launched the third ball of the innings into the crowd for the first 6 of the tournament. Dev struck in the second over, removing Hobbs for 11 runs. Hick edged his first ball for 4 but Dev had two wickets in three balls with an inswinging yorker. Even though Grace and Woolley had never even played a one-day match, let alone a T20, they looked at ease scoring multiple boundaries per over. At the end of the powerplay, England had amassed 71 runs for two wickets. Grace fell to Bedi but Woolley continued to score quickly, reaching 50 and guiding England to a convincing first-round victory.

    India 5-119
    S Ganguly 50no, K Dev 23
    B Willis 2-21, D Underwood 2-21

    England 3-122
    F Woolley 63no, A Lamb 23no
    K Dev 2-35, B Bedi 1-33

    England won by 7 wickets
    F Woolley was awarded Man of the Match.

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  • All Time Great Championship: Could Have Been T20 Heroes

    23 Year Old Scores a Century off 22 balls in 18 minutes.

    Over almost two decades, India has proven to be an unequal force in T20 international cricket. The likes of Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah have proven themselves time and time again against fellow T20 greats such as Aaron Finch, Rashid Khan and Lasith Malinga. But if you rewind the years, there is a plethora of big hitters, crafty turners and elite allrounders who would've loved the chance to take their team to the top in the most electric format of the game. Will Kapil Dev's men prove India would prevail across multiple generations or would the likes of Michael Bevan, Lance Klusener and Michael Holding show the world their teams have what it takes to be All Time Great T20 Heroes?

    Similar to previous ATG Championships, the greatest players from around the world will gather to face off against each other. With T20 being such an unpredictable format, each team will play each other in a 'Super 8' format. After every team has played each other, the top teams will progress to a knockout stage where only the best teams will progress to the Final and battle it out for ATG glory.

    Any player who has never played a T20 international is eligible to be selected in this tournament. 15-man squads were chosen with some community input for each team. The initial XI will be selected by the Cricket Captain engine and changes to the team will be made based on form throughout the tournament.

    Players to Watch
    Most players selected are simply the best ODI players before the advent of T20 cricket. Other players may not have seen the success in more traditional formats but showed the aptitude to play at the intensity needed for the shortest form of the game. Here are a few players worth paying attention to:

    This tournament was made with one player in mind: Michael Bevan. Bevan has it all, explosive hitting, clutch performances, and a vibe that turns crowds electric. Other players to keep an eye out for are Simon O'Donnell, arguably Australia's biggest hitter, and the face of WSC, Dennis Lillee. One more player, who didn't even play a single ODI match, is Don Bradman. While not known for his big-hitting abilities, the Don obviously knew how to launch a serious ball. He showed this off in a match where he scored a century off 22 balls in just 18 minutes.

    If there was one overseas player in history who would have captivated the IPL more than anyone else, it would be Ian Botham. The 'stash, the chutzpah, the grit and the determination set him apart from most other players. That's before mentioning his incredible ability to rip wins out of his opponents' hands with the bat and the ball. A lesser-known English star to watch out for is Colin Milburn who was once described as the following: "He hit the ball with the strength of a lumberjack and he had the courage of a lion, but he was no Neanderthal clubber". Need there be anything else said?

    Some of the greatest cricketers of all time have hailed from India. Unfortunately, almost all of them have played T20I cricket at some point. Even Sachin Tendulkar played a singular match, barring him from entering the tournament. Kapil Dev will do his best to carry his nation to victory, and what a player he would have been in T20 cricket. If you thought Sam Curran fetched a high price last IPL, Dev would have at least doubled that figure if given the opportunity. Everyone knows a crafty spinner can make or break a T20 match and India brings two of the craftiest spinners to have ever bowled: Anil Kumble and Bishan Bedi. The spin duo will surely be a key to India's success.

    New Zealand
    Before T20 cricket, Martin Crowe developed a fast-paced format known as Cricket MAX. While it flopped harder than the New Zealand Super Smash, it paved the way for the biggest innovation in cricket since WSC. Obviously, Crowe would have had the perfect skill set and knowledge of what it takes to be a successful T20 batsman. The other big name for the Kiwis is Richard Hadlee. As you know, Hadlee's inswingers will cut you in half - hope you're wearing a box!

    Waqar Younis. Wasim Akram. Imran Khan. Saqlain Mushtaq. There's a World XI bowling attack right there and Pakistan still have top-class bowlers to spare. Batsmen around the world struggled against these bowlers at the best of time and in a short format, there's almost nowhere to hide if all four of them are playing. Their batting lineup isn't lacking either with Miandad, Abbas and Anwar leading the charge. This Pakistan team will be very difficult to dislodge.

    South Africa
    An element of cricket that has dramatically changed since the beginning of T20 cricket is fielding. With bigger hits and tighter singles, dramatic catches and spectacular run outs have become a staple in all formats. One cricketer who had shown those skills well before his time was Jonty Rhodes. He would've taken to T20 cricket like a duck to water. With a lineup that includes names such as Klusener, Pollock(x2), Donald and Cronje, South Africa believe they have a chance of becoming the first nation to pick up two ATG titles.

    Sri Lanka
    While some may believe many of the players in the Sri Lankan squad are there to make up the numbers, the same thing was said about their '96 World Cup team. Aravind de Silva is the spearhead of their lineup and will need to score a lot of runs for Sri Lanka to be successful. Another way Sri Lanka can find success is if Kumar Dharmasena gives LBW dismissals off of his own bowling.

    West Indies
    There's a reason why the West Indies became one of the most feared teams in the world. Extreme, unplayable pace and huge hits. Viv Richards, Brian Lara, Clive Lloyd and Garry Sobers are enough to make any bowler think twice about wanting to bowl while the likes of Garner, Holding and Roberts will have most batsman ducking for cover. After coming agonisingly close to clinching the ATG ODI World Cup, the West Indies are hot favourites to take out the T20 Championship.

    Ladder Played Wins N/R NRR Total
    Australia 0 0
    England 0 0
    India 0 0
    New Zealand 0 0
    Pakistan 0 0
    South Africa 0 0
    Sri Lanka 0 0
    West Indies 0 0

    Round 1 Fixture
    Round 1
    ENG vs IND
    AUS vs SA
    PAK vs WI
    NZ vs SL