Former Australian great Mike Hussey thinks his country has a good shot in this year’s ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup in India, and he’s named the players he thinks need to step up if they’re going to win for the sixth time in a row.
Hussey won a World Cup with Australia in the West Indies in 2007, and he also played a pivotal role in England’s historic win at the 2017 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup.
Hussey believes that the fact that the majority of Australia’s team is back from the 2019 edition of the 50-over showcase, when they were eliminated by eventual victors England, would be a huge plus.
“I think Australia’s got a great chance as they have kept a (large) group of players together for a period of time now,” Hussey said.
“They all know their roles pretty well and they’ve got a bit of continuity in their team as well.
“I think they’ve been trying a few little different things. They performed well in the series (in March) against India in Indian conditions and that will give them enormous confidence coming into the World Cup.
“And Australia has a great history in World Cup events. So, I know they will be very determined to do extremely well.
“There are so many great teams. It’s hard to pick a favorite but I think Australia will give themselves a big chance to be right up there.”
Australia, the defending champions, were the first to announce their World Cup squad, and they shocked the cricket world by omitting star batter Marnus Labuschagne and including uncapped spinner Tanveer Sangha in a group of 18 players that will need to be reduced to 15 before the cut-off date on September 28.
Hussey has selected Australia’s greatest slow bowler as a critical piece in their title chances because he believes spin will play a significant impact on the sub-continent ground’s teams will experience in the World Cup in India.
“Adam Zampa could play a big role for Australia throughout the tournament,” Hussey said.
“He has been really good over the last few years.
“And I think Mitch Marsh is someone that can certainly have a big impact. He has been given a great role, batting in the top three now and he is playing with enormous confidence. So, if he gets his confidence up, he can be a really tough man to stop.”
Hussey is aware that all members of the Australian team must contribute over the six-week event, not just a select few, if Australia are to win another World Cup championship.
“You can’t rely on just one of two key players to win you a World Cup and it’s going to take a collective effort,” Hussey added.
“But I think for Australia to do really well, they need their big guns to really step up and I guess when you think of that, you think of Steve Smith and Pat Cummins.”