Football Football
Horse Racing Horse Racing
Cricket Cricket
Basketball Basketball
Golf Golf

Kevin Pietersen Betway blog: 2022 T20 World Cup preview & predictions

The Betway ambassador assesses England’s chances, discusses ‘Mankads’, and reveals his fancies for top run-scorer, top wicket-taker and tournament winner.

18 Oct | BY Kevin Pietersen | MIN READ TIME |
Kevin Pietersen Betway blog: 2022 T20 World Cup preview & predictions

England are the favourites

This England white-ball team is absolutely spectacular. They really are. They’re fabulous to watch, they’ve got all bases covered, and I think they go in as favourites.

It was a great victory in Pakistan, a huge victory. And they’ve been very confident in the way they’ve played the warm-up games in Australia. It’s been the perfect build-up.

The non-selection of Jason Roy, from what we’ve seen so far, hasn’t been too much of an issue. With Phil Salt or Alex Hales coming in, Dawid Malan playing the way that he has, and Jos Buttler popping back in and doing the business, the decision has almost been proved right.

The World Cup hasn’t started yet, though, and that comes with many different expectations. A series in Pakistan and a couple of warm-up games is one thing, but when you’re playing against the best players in the world every other day on the biggest stage, let’s hope that the decision to drop Roy doesn’t prove to be one that hinders England’s success.

Hales is a match winner

It’s a dust-off between Salt and Hales for that top spot, and it’s going be interesting to see who they pick. It’ll be good if Hales does get the gig, purely based on the fact that he wins games.

At the end of the day, it’s up to the players to agree on what the process is and whether a guy fits in. The most important point around all of this nonsense with Hales is the fact that he wins games of cricket for England.

The English public, whether it’s football fans, rugby fans, cricket fans, golf fans, you name it, they just want to see winning. They like winners. And the stuff that happens in and around the dressing room, people actually don’t care about. That’s more to do with creating a headline.

The Stokes factor

It’s irrelevant when Ben Stokes last played this form of the game. He brings experience, aura, and a fear factor to this England side.

When the opposition are doing all their matchday preparation, the man that will get talked about most is Stokes, because of what he can do, and what he has done in his career. He just brings that fear factor and that aura to the team.

I have no issue with Mankading

The ICC has changed the rules so the Mankad is now a run out, and I think that’s changed the dynamic of the dismissal. It’s a run out, it’s a mode of dismissal. Go looking for it. It can win you a game.

Previously, there’s absolutely no way that I could stand for it, unless you had given somebody a couple of warnings.

There are a couple of guys that back up to the extreme, and it’s those fine margins that can win you games of sport in high level competition. Now that it’s a mode of dismissal, everybody knows the rules, and it’s not just one team against the other.

No concern for Australia

I don’t draw too much from warm-up games, so I don’t think Australia will be concerned with their performances. The biggest players in the world want a crowd, they want competition, and they want energy from other avenues. When you’re playing at the Gabba or the MCG and there’s seven people watching you, the best players in the world have got absolutely no interest. It’s a net for them. It’s a knock around, and if they nick off it doesn’t matter.

However, when you’ve got 100,000 at the MCG and the crowd are really going for it, there’s just a different vibe and a different energy when you walk out to bat, which gets different parts of your body moving. The great players then stand up. So I draw nothing on warm-up games. They’re basically just net practice sessions.

My T20 World Cup predictions

Champions – England

England are the favourites for me. They have strength in depth in all departments. They’ve got quality fast bowlers, a fantastic spinner in Adil Rashid, and their batting needs no introduction.

Dark horse – South Africa

The reason why I say South Africa could be the dark horse is because, with the weather conditions that are knocking around, that South African bowling attack – Marco Jansen, Anrich Nortje and Kagiso Rabada – could do some real damage.

I’ve seen what Rabada and Nortje have done in the IPL when they played together for a season, and you can be 20 for five or 30 for six very quickly. Their batters won’t need to score that many runs to knock off those kind of totals. 

Top run-scorer – KL Rahul

I love him. I think he is the No. 1 batter in the world at the moment. He is absolutely fantastic.

With the ball bouncing, swinging and seaming, I think he plays in a very authentic way and is correct enough to rack up the runs.

Top wicket-taker – Marco Jansen

Being tall and swinging the ball, with the atmospheric conditions being in the bowler’s favour in Australia, I think he’s the guy.

Surprise star – Dawid Malan

I think your more conventional player is going to be the one that has success in this tournament considering the conditions. That consolidation role that Malan may have to play if England lose early wickets could lend itself to him being the biggest run-getter in that side.

Visit Betway’s cricket betting page.

Kevin Pietersen

Kevin Pietersen

World T20 and four-time Ashes winner, who retired as England’s second-highest run scorer of all time with 13,797 across all formats.

Kevin Pietersen

Kevin Pietersen

World T20 and four-time Ashes winner, who retired as England’s second-highest run scorer of all time with 13,797 across all formats.