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The top 5 all-rounders to watch out for in World Cup 2023

Smack with the willow, surgical with the ball: The top five all-rounders to watch out for in Cricket World Cup 2023.

Asia Cup 2023, Group A, India vs Pakistan_Hardik Pandya stood tall between Pakistan with his solid 87-run innings; Match draw _ Walking wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_Twitter)
Hardik Pandya would be Key for India in WC (Images: ©BCCI/Twitter)

With the upcoming ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 in India set to commence on October 5, most teams will rely on quality all-rounders for enhancing their chances in the tournament. The all-rounders have always had a huge role in any team - be it coming in the middle order and adding some valuable runs, or giving their side some breakthroughs with the ball.

An experienced all-rounder helps in balancing the team. Undoubtedly, they are the binding factor in a team, and deserve far more praise.

Let’s take a look at the top five all-rounders to watch out for in the Cricket World Cup 2023 in India:

ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022, Final, England vs Pakistan_ England beat Pakistan in T20 World Cup Final; England lift the T20 World Cup Trophy 2022 _ Walking Wicket (Source_ ©ICC/Twitter)
Ben Stokes smashed 182 on his return to ODI (Source: ©ICC/Twitter)
Ben Stokes (288 ODI runs in 7 innings since 2022)

The retirement news of Ben Stokes against South Africa in the middle of July in 2022 saw England struggling a little bit. But Stokes taking a U-turn just before World Cup 2023 has boosted their morale, he will play a huge role in England’s endeavor to defend their precious title.

Since 2022, Stokes has played seven ODIs - smashing 288 runs at an average of 41.14 at a strike rate of 107.86 with one fifty and one hundred. In 2023, Stokes found his rhythm in the recently concluded three match ODI series against New Zealand, with 235 runs in just three innings at an average of 78.3 and strike rate of 115.8 - with a best of 182, which is now the highest individual ODI score for England.

Because of his long-lasting groin injury, Stokes hasn’t been able to bowl but if the need arises he is the type of individual who will give his soul for his side. He was also the ninth highest run scorer in the 2019 ODI World Cup with 465 runs in 11 innings at an average of 66.42 and strike rate of 93.18, including five fifties and a best score of 89. With his vast experience in conditions in the subcontinent, Stokes will look to make the most of it with both bat and ball.

WI vs IND, T20I 2023_ Hardik Pandya  as a captain lost T20I series against West Indies by 3-2 margin. _ Walking wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_Twitter)
Hardik's innings against Pakistan proved his importance in squad (Images: ©BCCI/Twitter)
Hardik Pandya (472 ODI runs & 22 wickets in ODIs since 2022)

Hardik Pandya has always been an important member of the Indian side, and this became apparent when he was not bowling - leading to a sharp drop in the balance and performance of the team.

Even though he was scoring runs, the whole of India was waiting to see him with the ball in hand, and his current performance in both the departments has raised the morale of the whole team.

Since 2022, Hardik has notched up 472 ODI runs in 14 innings at an average of 36.30 and strike rate of 95.35 - with four half centuries, including his best of 87. In 2023, he smashed 372 runs in 12 innings at an average of 33.8 and strike rate of 93.9 - including three fifties, out of which 92 runs came in two innings at an average of 46 during the 2023 Asia Cup.

Even with the ball, he has given India some consistent six to seven over by picking up 16 wickets in 15 ODI innings in 2023 - at an average of 25.6 and economy of 5.24, including his best bowling figure of 3/3. Even during the last 2019 World Cup, he had managed 226 runs at a strike rate of 112.43 and 10 wickets in nine innings at an economy of 5.65.

Pandya, being the vice-captain of the India team which is going in the World Cup 2023, will look to contribute with the willow, ball and also by making some important on-field decisions.

England vs India, 3rd T20I, Top Performances_ Liam Livingstone's 42 off 29 helps England beat India in 3rd T20I; India take series 2-1 _ Walking Wicket (©ICC/Twitter)
Livingstone's experience playing IPL would come handy (Images: ©ICC/Twitter)
Liam Livingstone (364 runs & 9 wickets in ODIs since 2022)

With Ben Stokes’ return, England is already very strong but this team has more than one all-rounder, and Liam Livingstone is another jewel in the side. Livingstone can give his side some quick fire runs and few overs of both off-spin and leg-spin. Of late, he has also displayed that he can come in early and drop the anchor on end to help his side post a huge total.

Since 2022, Livingstone has scored 364 runs in 11 innings at an average of 40.44 and strike rate of 117.79 with three fifties. This also includes his best score of 95* against New Zealand, in which coming at 55/5, he propelled his side to 226 in 34 overs. The year 2023 has been fabulous for him - with 186 runs in four innings at an average of 62 and strike rate of 110.1. Besides that, he has also picked up nine wickets at an economy of 5.32 since 2022.

Livingstone was in golden touch even in IPL 2023 - with 279 runs in nine innings at a strike rate of 163.16 and he will look to give his all for England with the bat and ball on the slow spinning tracks.

Mitchell Santner (325 runs & 16 wickets in ODIs since 2022)

Veteran all-rounder for New Zealand, Mitchell Santner will continue to play a big role for his side in World Cup 2023.

Stats do not completely reveal the importance of the left-arm all-rounder for the Blackcaps. But with Michael Bracewell getting injured, the onus will be on Santner to hold one end in the middle overs in an attempt to keep the opponents’ batters in check.

Since 2022, Santner has collected 325 ODI runs in 14 innings at an average of 29.54 and strike rate of 91.03 - with one fifty and a best score of 57. He also has a decent record in the ongoing year, with 195 runs in seven innings at an average of 27.9 and strike rate of 99.5. Since 2022, he has got 16 scalps in 19 innings at an average of 48.06 at an economy of 4.94.

Santner didn’t have a great outing in the 2019 World Cup - with just four wickets in 10 innings but he will hope to better those numbers in this edition. His fielding is another big asset for New Zealand and he will look to take New Zealand one step ahead in 2023.

ICC Men's T20 WC 2021 - AUS vs NZ - Mitchell Marsh's unbeaten 77 helps Australia beat New Zealand and win their maiden T20 WC Title. (©ICC/Twitter)
Marsh smashed 96 against India in 3rd ODI (Images: ©ICC/Twitter)
Mitchell Marsh (559 runs in 16 innings since 2022)

If there is one cricketer in recent times who has significantly improved his batting in the 50-over format, it is Mitchell Marsh. Coming in at the top for Australia, Marsh has sent the bowlers packing to all parts of the park.

Since 2022, Marsh has smashed 559 ODI runs in 16 innings at an average of 37.30 and strike rate of 107.3 - with five fifties and a best score of 96. In 2023, he has managed 417 runs in ten innings at an average of 46.3 and strike rate of 121.6 with four half centuries - out of which 194 runs came in three innings at an average of 97 and strike rate of 131.08 during Australia’s last ODI tour to India in March, 2023.

He hasn’t been bowling a lot because of his injury scare. In fact, he hasn’t bowled in ODIs this year, but his batting at the top order has demolished some good bowling attacks. With Travis Head’s injury possibly ruling him out of the World Cup, Marsh will look to partner David Warner in the opening position to give his side some cracking starts.

The ICC Men’s ODI World Cup 2023 will begin on October 05 with England taking on New Zealand in the opening clash at Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.


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