Who will be best batsmen for elite nations at 2016 World Twenty20?
Simon Sinclair | March 11, 2016
As the minnows battle it out for a place in the next round of the World Twenty20, the big boys are chomping at the bit to get into action.
The world’s best batsmen will descend upon India looking to enhance reputations in the subcontinent and guide their sides to glory.
Here, Coral take a look at the men who will aim to dominate when the competition begins next week.
David Warner (Australia)
Volatile Aussie Warner has carved out a reputation as one of the finest batsmen in the world due to his ability to send the ball to all parts of the ground.
The 29-year-old has taken apart several top-quality bowlers, displaying remarkable power and guile, despite his diminutive stature at the crease.
Warner has vast experience in the IPL with 83 matches under his belt, scoring two centuries in the competition, one of which came from just 54 deliveries.
The Baggy Greens have never lifted the T20 crown, a surprising fact given their dominance, but Warner could lead the way for his team by being their top man at odds of 3/1.
Jos Buttler (England)
The wicketkeeper has proved to be England’s matchwinner over the course of the last year, with some truly outstanding performances in the middle order.
As a result of his fine play for the Three Lions he moved up the order in the one-day internationals against South Africa and became the player Eoin Morgan’s men build their team around.
Buttler justified the decision, and will now aim to put his stamp on a major tournament despite his lack of experience in the subcontinent and spinning conditions.
The 25-year-old has outside odds of 6/1 to be England’s leading run-scorer, which is a very enticing option.
Virat Kohli (India)
Kohli will come into the tournament on home soil with the heavy weight of expectation on his shoulders.
The 27-year-old has taken over the mantle from Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid as the nation’s leading man, and has done well to live up to the billing of his talent.
His knowledge of conditions and ability against spin will be pivotal to his side’s chances at winning their first T20 title since the inaugural tournament in 2007.
Kohli is backed to deliver on the big stage yet again, following his outstanding display in the last World Cup, as the favourite to be the hosts’ leading man at odds of 2/1.
Martin Guptill (New Zealand)
The retirement of Brendon McCullum has left a void for the Kiwis ahead of the tournament, leaving them short of experience in India.
Kane Williamson is a rising star and a lot will be expected of him, but Guptill could hold the key at the start of the innings.
The 29-year-old has displayed great power at the crease and boasts a strike rate in the 130s along with a solid average of 34.
Guptill had a good series against Pakistan and Sri Lanka, which means he could well be a good bet at 9/2 to top the run charts for New Zealand.
Hashim Amla (South Africa)
After struggling for form during the Test series against England, Amla returned to near his imperious best during his side’s limited overs matches with the Three Lions and Australia.
Amla, 32, has the strokeplay and experience to master the subcontinent conditions, with the ability to score runs all around the ground.
The opener notched his highest T20 score in his side’s narrow defeat to the Baggy Greens on Wednesday, which could make him a good option at 7/2 to be the Proteas’ shining light in India.
AB de Villiers and Quinton de Kock may push Amla all the way but, considering that this could be his final T20 tournament, he will aim to bow out of the format on the highest of notes.
Tillakaratne Dilshan (Sri Lanka)
Even at the age of 39, Dilshan will be one of the Lions’ key players at the tournament, with much expected of him in the absence of Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara.
The opener has played in all five World Cups and has made a lasting impression in each competition, including Sri Lanka’s triumph in Bangladesh two years ago.
Dilshan has the power to launch the ball over the boundary, but has also brought ingenuity to the game with his infamous ‘Dilscoop’.
His skill-set makes him an intriguing option at 5/2 to be the man at the heart of the Lions’ defence of their title.
Chris Gayle (West Indies)
Perhaps the most destructive player in world cricket with his sheer power at the crease. Should Gayle be at his best for the duration of the tournament, the Windies will be a strong bet to go all the way and claim their second title.
When the 36-year-old is in full rhythm there is no batsman in the world that can match his firepower, which is why he is backed at 6/4 to lead his team in runs.
Gayle’s nonchalant attitude can sometimes be to his detriment, but should he raise his game to the level of four years ago there is no reason why he could not lead the entire tournament.