Pakistan pacer was optimistic as he reflected over his side's unexpected loss to the West Indies in the tournament opener.
Whenever you discuss New Zealand, you always think of them as being 'one of the strong sides'. But the Black Caps are rarely known as the favourites for a world tournament. With teams such as England and India ruling the roost, Kane Williamson's men once again go into the tournament as a team many expect to qualify for the semi-finals, but not a team that's considered likely to win the prestigious trophy. The Black Caps have a leader who is captaining his side in a World Cup for the first time, after the retirement of Brendon McCullum, while the likes of Grant Elliott have also retired. However, with the likes of Martin Guptill, Ross Taylor, Trent Boult and Tim Southee still forming the core of the team alongside Kane Williamson, the players will have high expectations from themselves.
If their recent form is any guide, England could well be looking at their maiden World Cup title in 2019. Currently ranked as number in ICC's Rankings for ODI Teams, this side has the firepower and the track-record to take on the very best the world has to offer and are strong contenders to win the ICC tournament.
Given their ranking in ICC’s ODI Rankings, Afghanistan are the true underdogs of this World Cup, but then, who doesn't love an underdog? Many Afghan cricketers learned the game in refugee camps in Pakistan when their families had to immigrate due to Soviet invasion in the 1980s and their progress to qualify for the 10-team ICC tournament is truly remarkable. In recent times, Afghanistan’s World Cup preparations have been far from ideal as the Afghan cricket board decided to replace the national team captain, Asghar Afghan. Afghan had been the captain for all three formats for almost four years. He was replaced by 28-year-old all-rounder Gulbadin Naib who has been in and out the side since he made his debut 10 years ago but given the support he has garnered from his teammates, he could well lead his side to some big achievements in the tournament.