Top 5 Wicket keepers to watch out in the World Cup
Jannatul Naym Pieal
Following is a list of top 5 wicket keeper-batsmen who are likely to shine in World Cup 2015 – to be played in Australia and New Zealand. [See also: বিশ্বকাপের সেরা ১০ অলরাউন্ডার]
1. Kumar Sangakkara (Sri Lanka) : He is perhaps the greatest wicket keeper-batsmen in the history of cricket. There is only one man – Adam Gilchrist – who is statistically ahead of him as far as World Cup is concerned. But since he will be playing at least 6 more World Cup matches this year in Australia and New Zealand, he is very much likely to surpass Gilchrist. Maybe his age has already reached an alarming figure of 37, Sangakkara is playing as well as he ever has. He has a world-class average of around 41 and has recently spent some wonderful time at the striking end in New Zealand. With more than 13 thousand runs and over 450 dismissals to his name, this veteran cricketer, who returned to his former role of wicket keeping for the ODI side last year, will be entering into the World Cup as statistically the best wicket keeper-batsman of all time. But one thing he still lacks of to match with his contenders – Dhoni and Gilchrist. And that is to win a World Cup. It will be his last chance to win the World Cup and if he succeeds, he will not remain the ‘best’ only but become the ‘most successful’ as well!
2. MS Dhoni (India) : He is not the best like Sangakkara, calculating overall record in all forms of cricket. But when it comes about ODIs only, he is probably the second best wicket keeper-batsman of all time, after Adam Gilchrist. He dons the gloves, acts in the role of the backbone of Team India’s late-middle order and has captained his team to almost every trophy there is to be won from the ODI World Cup to Champions Trophy, Asia Cup and CB Series. With an average and a strike rate of 53 and 89 respectively, he owns a superhuman average in winning chases which makes him the greatest finisher of modern cricket, if not the greatest finisher of all time. There is nothing left for this cold-blooded cricketer to win. As a result, World Cup 2015 could be nothing but a picnic for him. But no, he will definitely be trying to make it memorable for himself as it is going to be his last appearance in the showcase event of cricket.
3. Quinton de Kock (South Africa) : When South Africa was in a great trouble with AB de Villiers facing a back problem and eventually giving up from standing behind the wicket, de Kock dismounted as the savior for his team. Since then, he has proved himself as the perfect alternative to AB de Villiers as a wicket keeper-batsman. This young keeper is very much exciting to watch with a strike rate of 90+ to go along with his impressive average of 42. He is also considered as technically world’s best wicket keeper at this moment. His presence in the South African batting line-up gives it more depth than ever, especially when it comes about chasing a big total. He will give his best to leave a mark in his maiden appearance at the window of cricket.
4. Jos Buttler (England) : England’s wicket keeper is one of the most dynamic lower-order batsmen in the world. In an English ODI side that disappoints more than it enthralls, Jos is a beacon of hope, a hard-hitting batsman whose average of mid-30s doesn’t reflect as much of his capabilities as the strike rate of around 120. He is unconventional and excels at scoops and reverse-sweeps. An array of crafty improvised shots is also a hallmark of his batting, and has helped bump up his side’s total at the back end of the innings on several occasions. With his hard work in the lower order along with his consistent glove work already proved the world that he is here to stay for a long time. His first ever World Cup appearance can help him to spread his name in a bigger and better way.
5. Mushfiqur Rahim (Bangladesh) : This 5 ft 3 inches batting sensation, who was recently relieved from the responsibility of captaining Bangladesh’s ODI side, is estimated among World’s best batsmen of current time. Maybe an average of 29 from 140 matches doesn’t reflect how important he is in the Bangladeshi batting line-up. But it is undeniable that without his presence, Bangladesh couldn’t come till where they currently stand. Mushfiqur has been the best man of his team with the willow for last 3 years or so. Although he had a shaky start, he has been improving lately. Specially his batting has seen a huge improvement in last couple of years, since he became the first Bangladeshi to hit a double ton in Test cricket. With 140 dismissals in 140 matches, he has proved to be quite a good wicket keeper as well. In his 3rd appearance in the mega event of cricket, expectations from him will be more than ever.