Colombo: Former India captain Sourav Ganguly spoke to The Telegraph in the lead-up to the World Twenty20, which begins on Tuesday.
The following are excerpts
His tournament favourites...
I don’t like the word ‘favourites’ too much, but the West Indies look the strongest. It’s a very good team... Of course, I wouldn’t rule out India either.
The next two...
Probably South Africa and New Zealand... The Black Caps, I reckon, are the dark horses... They have a good record in big tournaments... Look, T20 is such that any team can pull it off. One over may make all the difference.
Five players to watch out for (alphabetically)...
CHRIS GAYLE: Has an awesome T20 record and is such a massive striker of the ball.
LASITH MALINGA: An excellent T20 bowler, with good variations. I think only Virat Kohli has had the better of him.
BRENDON McCULLUM: A real game-changer... He brings a lot to the table, particularly in the T20 format. He’s the type to just take off at any time.
SUNIL NARINE: He’ll be more than a handful in the subcontinent. Like Malinga, has enough variations... If you look at the last IPL, he’s got a terrific T20 record.
(Narine turns out for the Kolkata Knight Riders, the reigning champions, and took home the Player of the Series award.)
KIERON POLLARD: Like Gayle, is a massive striker of the ball... An asset for any team in T20.
The Indians who could make it big over the next few weeks...
So many... Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh, Mahendra Singh Dhoni... Kohli... That’s why India’s being rated highly.
If there’s a captain he’ll be watching with interest...
Dhoni... As captain, he’s very good in the shorter formats.
A not-so-experienced captain to watch out for...
AB de Villiers... I’d like to see him from close quarters.
Finally, if there’s a simple approach to T20 cricket...
(Grins) A batsman has to keep playing his shots... Just keep hitting... The bowlers need luck in T20.
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