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The T20 World Cup is reaching a fascinating stage, as the world’s best will soon be meeting in the semi-final stages. However, one nation that certainly has work to do after their opening match in the super 12 round is India. But, has a shock defeat against Pakistan had a negative impact on their odds for the tournament? 

India Still Listed As Favorites 

The first big shock of the T20 World Cup came on Sunday afternoon, as the much-fancied Indian team were well beaten by Pakistan. India were sent out to bat first, and scored 151/7 from their 20 overs. Unsurprisingly, it was Virat Kohli that was the star man for the Indians, as the captain scored 57 from 49 balls as he bids to sign off from the short form as captain with a World Cup success. However, many of the batters below him struggled, including Rishabh Pant and Ravindra Jadeja, who scored just 39 and 13. 

It was with the ball that India had the most problems, as they failed to take a single wicket as Pakistan scored 152 to win by ten wickets with 13 balls left. Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuveshwar Kumar both failed to take a single wicket from their three overs, while Jadeja couldn’t make the breakthrough over four wickets, as Mohammad Rizwan scored 79 runs and Babar Azam scored 68. 

Huge Second Game For India 

A lot now hinges on India’s second game in the super 12 round, as India can not afford to lose against New Zealand with just the top two progressing. Defeat will give complete control in the group to the Kiwis and Pakistan, and could see India staring down the barrel of an embarrassing exit at such an early stage. Such a situation was desperately hard to foresee, as India have been the clear favorites in the Vegas odds betting to win the tournament since the draw was made. 

However, New Zealand certainly have a good record against India, as they have beaten their illustrious rivals on eight previous occasions. But, India do have recent history on their side, as they beat New Zealand in the last T20 series between the nations 3-0 at the beginning of 2020. However, New Zealand did get revenge with a whitewash success of their own in the following ODI series. 

England Could Be The Team To Beat 

With India’s very well documented issues at the start of the T20 World Cup, it could mean that more confidence could be there for England. England opened their campaign with a very comfortable win over the West Indies, as they needed to score just 56 to beat the 2012 and 2016 world champions. The nation captained by Eoin Morgan are the second favorites in the betting, and the form of some of their big hitters is certainly a plus. 

Jos Buttler top-scored with 24 in that first victory, while the in-form Liam Livingstone will certainly be a player to watch. Moeen Ali has also excelled in short-form cricket this season for both England and Birmingham Phoenix and was named the player of the match in that opening game after taking two wickets from his four overs. Many still expect England and India to play out the final, which makes for an interesting month or so of top-quality cricketing action. 

(guest article)

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