T20 WC: Mighty Aussie line-up can chase anything, warns Head

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | June 17, 2024 IST

Head with Stoinis

Gros Islet (St Lucia), June 17:Australians excel at the tough stages of a cricket game. They usually trust each other's abilities and fight as a team. That is the reason they have the highest number of ICC multi-nation tournament titles.

Those who believe present Australian batting line-up is about their top order with Travis Head being the master tormentor, for them Head himself has replied that their powerful late middle-order is capable of chasing any target.

After ending Group B of the 2024 Men’s T20 World Cup with a clean slate through a five-wicket win over Scotland, Australia’s left-handed opener Travis Head believes with a lot of firepower in their middle-order, anything is bound to happen during the last seven to eight overs of their innings. 

Chasing 181 to beat Scotland at the Daren Sammy National Cricket Stadium, Australia needed 87 runs off 39 balls. Head started slow before making a 49-ball 68, but it was Marcus Stoinis smashing 59 off 29 balls, followed by Tim David making 24 not out off 14 deliveries, that helped Australia reach home with two balls to spare.

"You're going through the gears and working out where you can do it and it naturally happened with Stoin (Stoinis). He was playing beautifully and I was playing that role with him where I stayed out there as long as I could, knowing that hopefully my chance would come.”

"But with so much power, anything is possible in the last seven to eight overs. We got to a stage where it was time to go, and we'd kept the powder dry, and we were able to accelerate through the back end.”

"There's going to be times when it's going to be done different ways. So pleased I was able to spend some time out there, get the job done, put us in a position and help us win, and have that partnership with Stoin.”

 “It's not always going to be as fluent and not going to be as fast a start. Sometimes it might be slower and we might have to do it a different way. I feel like I can do that and here I showed that," said Head to reporters.

Talking about the luxury Australia have with Stoinis, David and Matthew Wade as big hitters in the middle order, Head quipped, "It's a hugely important role through the middle there. Through that middle, there's going to be some tricky situations.”

"There's so much power there and for the rate to get to where it was -– that's why I felt so comfortable with those guys behind me that as long as we get a few balls into them. On these wickets, which are slow and when (Stoinis) is playing so well, he's got so much power, which is hugely important for us. It's nice to see him off to a very good start."

With Head showing he can thrive despite going slow in the T20 World Cup, he attributed this skill to facing unknown bowlers during his blistering time for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024.

 “Not a hell of a lot. I think sometimes that’s a good thing. Look at my last two months, I’ve gone into a lot of unknowns, so I feel like I’ve got a good preparation in going into games and whatnot. Putting names to faces, watching them in the warm-ups and watching the footage, going in fresh and seeing the ball come down, reacting to that as well as I can.”

Just like their three Group B games, Australia’s first two Super Eight matches will be against Bangladesh in Antigua and Afghanistan in St Vincent, starting from 8:30 pm local time. Their big Super Eight clash against India on June 24 will be at St Lucia in the morning slot.

Head signed off by saying he had to time his naps well so that he could have sufficient energy while playing evening games in the tournament. "I've got to time my naps well. It's been a challenge the last couple of games, the 8.30 (starts).”

 “I probably left my sleep a little bit later in the afternoon and woke up a bit sleepy. So, it might have to be (taking a nap) before midday. It's got its challenges. You're waiting and clock-watching until 7 pm when you leave for the ground."

If Head's words come true, then the mighty Aussies with their all-round excellence and especially the batting prowess down the order can upset any opposition. Only time will say if Australia once again lift another ICC World Cup title. (With IANS support)

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