Group A Preview: India, Pakistan favourites, but Ireland could spring a surprise

T20 World Cup 2024 Group A Preview: India, Pakistan favourites, but Ireland could spring a surprise

The carnival of cricket that is T20 World Cup 2024 has begun in the West Indies and United States of America, with thrilling action on the first couple of days itself. We have seen a team chase down 195 in 17.4 overs and we have witnessed a super over already.

T20 World Cup 2024 is the biggest edition yet, with 20 teams participating in it. Teams are split into four different groups, from which the top two teams will advance to the Super Eight stage. Today we are going to discuss who could be the winner of Group A, which consists of two heavyweights India and Pakistan, alongwith USA, Canada and Ireland.

USA and Canada competed in the only Group A fixture so far, which was won by the hosts by seven wickets. Canada posted a strong total of 194 on the back of Navneet Dhaliwal and Nicholas Kirton’s half-centuries. Chasing the target, USA were reeling behind with only 48/2 on the board in eight overs. Aaron Jones then produced an outrageous knock of 94 not-out in 40 deliveries while Andries Gous supported well with 65 off 46.

India vs Pakistan is the biggest attraction of any ICC tournament and this time they will meet in New York on June 9th. The two rivals last met in the 2022 T20 World Cup, where India came out on top by four wickets in a last-ball thriller with Virat Kohli scoring an unbeaten 82 off 53 balls.

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Odds of topping Group A (22Bet, Parimatch)

Below you can see the odds of each team topping Group A in this T20 World Cup.


Recent form of teams

India: L W W W T

India 1The men in blue faced Bangladesh in their only warm-up fixture ahead of the 2024 T20 World Cup and they won by 60 runs. Winning wasn’t as necessary as giving chances to the players who are vying for the same spot. Only one of Sanju Samson and Rishabh Pant can feature in the side as a wicket-keeper and Pant pretty much sealed his spot with a fifty. Suryakumar Yadav struck 31 off 18 while Hardik Pandya was brutal on spinners in his knock of 23-ball 40. Shivam Dube failed with the bat but picked two wickets with Arshdeep Singh also showing good signs, picking 2 for 12 in his three overs.

Pakistan: W A L A L

Pakistan 2Pakistan did not get to play any warm-up fixtures as they arrived late after being on the tour of England for a four-match T20I series. Things didn’t go well for them there as they suffered a 2-0 series defeat with two games getting abandoned with rain. They lost the second game at Edgbaston by 23 runs, failing to chase 184 with Fakhar Zaman’s 45 off 21 being the only positive. Pakistan were then hammered by seven wickets in the fourth game at the Oval. They could post only 158 in 20 overs with Babar Azam scoring 36 off 22 and Usman Khan making 38 off 21.

Ireland: L W A W W

irelandIreland took on Sri Lanka in their T20 World Cup warm-up game at Lauderhill and ended up on the losing side by 41 runs. Opting to field first, their bowlers did a good job to have Sri Lanka at 97/6 in 13.1 overs but they lost their way at the back end and conceded 163 in 20 overs. Chasing the target, Paul Stirling struck 21 off 13 to get them a quick start before they lost both the openers. Ireland kept losing wickets and could not keep up with the required rate.


The United States of AmericaUSA were unfortunate to have both their warm-up fixtures washed out due to rain but it didn’t affect their start to the maiden T20 World Cup campaign as they defeated Canada by seven wickets. Harmeet Singh was the pick of the bowlers for them, claiming 1 for 27 in four overs but the rest of the attack was taken to the cleaners. They lost both the openers early in the run-chase and were way behind the required rate before Aaron Jones and Andries Gous put on a 131-run partnership in just 9.1 overs.

Canada: L A L L L

CanadaCanada haven’t been in good form and things didn’t change in their World Cup opener as they lost to the USA after being in a strong position. Batting first, Navneet Dhaliwal made 61 in 44 deliveries while Nicholas Kirton scored 51 off 31. Shreyas Movva then smashed 32 not-out in just 16 balls to power the total to 194. Canada bowlers did a good job early on to keep a lid on the run-scoring, conceding only 48 runs in eight overs but then they had no answers to the USA pair.

Upcoming fixtures Group A

India vs Ireland

Odds for India win: 1.07 (22Bet)
Odds for Ireland win: 9.5 (22Bet)

India and Ireland will begin their 2024 T20 World Cup campaign on June 5th when they meet at the newly built stadium in New York. The Rohit Sharma-led Indian side will be heavy favourites heading into the game and has the odds of 1.07 on 22Bet.

These two teams have competed against each on seven occasions and India have been victorious in all of those games. The last time these two teams met was in August 2023, where India won two games and the third fixture was abandoned due to rain.

The last game played at New York between Sri Lanka and South Africa witnessed a low-scoring game with significant assistance for bowlers. With that in mind, you can expect India to dominate this game and get a big NRR boost.

Pakistan vs USA

Odds for Pakistan win: 1.08 (Parimatch)
Odds for USA win: 7.40 (Parimatch)

Pakistan will kick off their World Cup campaign with a clash against the hosts USA at Grand Prairie Stadium, Dallas on June 6th. The United States of America are coming off a seven-wicket victory over Canada but they will have a mountain of a task against Pakistan.

These two countries have never faced each other in T20 cricket but Pakistan are clearly the stronger side heading into this game. Pakistan have a stronger batting unit and their pace attack could prove to be too much for the USA. You can bet on Pakistan to win the game on Parimatch at 1.08 odds.

However, if you do want to take a punt on a USA win, bet on 22Bet instead of Parimatch at much better odds of 8.01.

Who will top Group A?

As you have seen in the table earlier, only India and Pakistan stand a practical chance of topping Group A. India are the strongest candidates and you can bet on them at 1.35 on Parimatch. On 22Bet, you will get slightly lesser returns at the odds of 1.33. Pakistan have higher odds of topping the group at 3.60 on 22Bet.

India had done well in the shorter format prior to the Indian Premier League, beating Afghanistan by 3-0 with a super over victory in the third game. In December last year, they played a three-match in South Africa and it ended in a draw with both teams winning a game each. Pakistan, on the other hand, lost their most recent T20 series against England and had to settle for a draw against a second-string New Zealand side in April.

Ireland, USA and Canada are considerably weaker sides compared to the two heavyweights, who are pretty much guaranteed to take two points each from these three opponents. Assuming rain doesn’t play a spoilsport in any of the games, the India-Pakistan clash will decide the Group A winner.

Talking about the India vs Pakistan encounter, the men in blue will be favourites to win. The two teams have faced each other 12 times in the shorter format, with India leading the scoreline by 8-3. Between the two, India have a stronger batting line-up with the likes of Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Suryakumar Yadav and Rishabh Pant. They also have Jasprit Bumrah and two quality spinners who can trouble Pakistan batters. Pakistan’s best chance of winning this game would be their pace attack of Shaheen Afridi, Naseem Shah and Mohammad Amir running through India’s top order with the new ball.

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