Of all the big sides contending for the title, England are the one with the least amount of preparation for the T20 World Cup.
First, a number of their top players did not play the Indian Premier League and missed out on valuable acclimatization to the UAE conditions.
Then, they opted out of their tour of Pakistan, not only inviting a barrage of condemnation but also passing up on the chance of testing themselves against a top side.
It means that the last competitive T20I they played was in Manchester way back in July.
They did play a pair of warm-ups recently, losing to India but beating New Zealand, but those are hardly good substitutes for the intensity produced in actual matches.
Good thing is that they have a lot of talent on their hands, even if some of their first-choice players are out injured (Sam Curran) or only just regained fitness (Ben Stokes).
Like England, the West Indies, too, have an overabundance of tailor-made T20 talent, which helps them remain competitive no matter who is injured and what the crisis.
Also, like England, the Caribbean Kings, too, have not played a T20I series recently to get back in rhythm. Their last competitive assignment was a Test series at home against Pakistan.
They lost both their warm-ups — one to Pakistan and another against Afghanistan — as well and seemed almost uninterested.
That said, you can still expect the West Indies of the World Cup to be a different West Indies. The mercurial Calypsos are naturally comfortable playing this format and can come alive any time no matter what their results have been. It’s an argument that doesn’t hold for an all-format side such as England but does for the West Indies.
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