Shane Bond tips India and SA to clinch World T20 title

“I tip India and South Africa to be winners of the tournament,” he said yesterday. 

Bond is not short of Twenty20 experience. Apart from playing for his country in the shortest form of the game, he also participated in the Indian Premier League after a stint in the rebel Indian Cricket League.

On returning home from the 2010 ICC World Twenty20 in the West Indies, he announced his retirement.

‘India well balanced’
“India are playing very well in this competition. They appear to have a good balance and options. However, South Africa have a better bowling attack,” he said.

Bond (37) said bowling is a crucial area in this form of the game. “There’s no problem in going in with four bowlers, but all of them need to fire. If one of the four fails, the team is in trouble,” said Bond, whose career was marred by recurring injuries.

India pacer Irfan Pathan celebrates the dismissal of England’s Alex Hales with teammates during their ICC World T20 match at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Sunday. Pic/AFP

Zaheer Khan, according to him, will come good soon: “Look, it’s up to him to work out how much his body can take. All I can say is that he’s a fine bowler and has tremendous control over swing. He will be back to his best soon.”

Bond rated Dale Steyn and Pat Cummins as the best fast bowlers in world cricket today, while Kyle Mills topped his New Zealand list.

He was not coy to indicate that he is looking at his present role as a stepping stone to coach the men’s team. “Unfortunately, I couldn’t continue playing, so I applied for a coaching post,” he said.

India will remember Bond for his devastating form vs Sourav Ganguly’s team during their NZ tour of 2002-03 when India lost both the Tests of the series.  

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