Sachin Tendulkar picks his T20 World Cup 2022 semi-finalists

With the T20 World Cup 2022 Super 12s set to kickstart this weekend, Sachin Tendulkar made his predictions for the four semi-finalists in the competition.
Sachin Tendulkar
“The other two are dark horses who may sneak in from the back door.”

The T20 World Cup 2022 has had a fascinating start, with Namibia comprehensively defeating the 2014 champions Sri Lanka in the opener in Geelong on Sunday, October 16, and Scotland outplaying the two-time winners West Indies in Hobart the following day. The two results set it up nicely in the opening round of the competition, with two teams from each group set to progress to the Super 12s stage. 

Sachin Tendulkar, one of game’s greats acknowledged the two teams’ brilliance, and remarked that the gap between the top teams is bridged in the shortest format.

“See, the gap is bridged only in shorter formats,” Tendulkar told Sportstar. “The moment you get into longer formats… I was watching Namibia and the Netherlands yesterday, and they played good cricket. In the shorter format, associate teams stand a reasonable chance to surprise the opposition because there’s not much time for recovery. In Test cricket, you need a different set of skills to be able to last five days, be competitive and at the top of the game. It requires different skill sets, without any doubt. 

“Here, because the format is short, the gap is bridged, which leads to more chances of upsets. If you drop down to T10, it might become even more, so shorter the format, the gap is lesser. That’s what I feel.”

As for his predictions for the four semi-finalists, Tendulkar backed India, the inaugural champions to lift the title, while also naming the hosts Australia and arch-rivals Pakistan among his picks.

“Champion… I would want India to be the champion but my top four would be India, Pakistan, Australia and England,” Tendulkar said. “New Zealand is a dark horse, so is South Africa because they know the conditions and in South Africa, you get to encounter these conditions in September-October. Pitches are more or less the same, that’s why I am saying the same. But the top four would be these, the other two are dark horses who may sneak in from the back door.”

Tendulkar also offered his take on running out the batter for backing up at the non-striker’s end, after Deepti Sharma’s run-out of Charlotte Dean at Lord’s last month sparked several debates.

“She was playing to what the laws of the game are,” Tendulkar said.

“It’s a rule now. If a player is short of the crease or doesn’t make the crease, then the batter is given out, right? Just like he misses a ball that’s heading toward stumps and in line of the stumps, he is given out lbw. So the ICC has introduced the rule that if you are out of the crease (before the ball is bowled), then you are run out.

“Spirit of cricket… whatever you are playing within the rules of the game, that is spirit of cricket.”