Players to watch in the Champions
Shakib Al Hasan, the world’s leading allrounder in ODIs, is revered in Bangladesh.
The left-handed batsman is fast approaching 5,000 runs in ODIs, second highest in Bangladesh history, and his left-arm spin has claimed more than 200 wickets.
His wide range of strokes has given him flexibility on demanding foreign pitches, and his aggressive strokes have netted him a second-best six centuries, mostly from No 5.
“His presence ... just lifts the confidence in the entire dressing room,” captain Mashrafe Murtaza said.
There might not be a player better in the last 10 overs of an innings than Buttler, who remains composed even in the toughest of scenarios and doesn’t need to play himself in before unloading his box of tricks.
With Buttler around, there will be no such thing as a lost cause for England in the Champions Trophy.
Quinton de Kock played baseball before he turned to cricket, but the switch was a good one for South Africa.
By the age of 24, De Kock already has 12 ODI centuries, 12 half-centuries, over 3,000 ODI runs and collects them at a fierce strike rate of 95.42. He also has the third-highest score by a South African in ODIs, a 178 off 113 balls against Australia in September.
Despite a fairly small stature and boyish looks, he can make boundary-hitting look effortless, as the baby-faced left-hander did when he crushed Australia’s bowling attack for that 178.
De Kock is a form player and when the opening batsman’s eye is in, he can put South Africa ahead of the game immediately, whether that is by setting big targets or chasing them down.
Equally comfortable playing a cover drive or stepping back to pull, hook, and cut, he made three centuries in a row early in his career in a series against India and went on a run of four half-centuries and a century in consecutive ODIs at the beginning of this year.
De Kock would be in South Africa’s team for his batting alone but he also is a sharp wicketkeeper, freeing up space for another batsman or bowler.
Moises Henriques owed his unexpected selection for Australia as much for coming into form as his rivals’ own was declining.
Henriques was picked ahead of batsmen such as Usman Khawaja, Peter Handscomb, George Bailey, and allrounder James Faulkner.
The Portuguese-born Henriques has been a fringe player for the national squad, playing only eight ODIs from his debut in 2009 to his last match in August. The allrounder has tallied 46 runs at an average of 6.5 and his medium pace has claimed six wickets at an average of 40.
And yet he was chosen on form, domestically, and in the Indian Premier League, where he averaged 46 with the bat in 11 innings, and took one wicket.