Ahead of T20 World Cup 2021 final between Australia and New Zealand on Sunday, November 14, Wasim Akram has backed the former team to lift the coveted trophy at the Dubai International Stadium. The former Pakistan pacer has stated that Australia and their players have peaked at the right time.
The Aaron Finch-led side, who won four out of their five matches in the Super 12s, defeated unbeaten Paistan by 5 wicket in the second semi-final on Wednesday in Dubai.
Despite losing captain Finch for a golden duck in the first over, Australia held nerves to chase down the 177-run target with an over to spare. Matthew Wade and Marcus Stoinis blasted unbeaten 41 off 17 and 40 off 31 not out runs respectively. David Warner shone again with a fluent 30-ball 49.
Ahead of the summit clash, Wasim Akram has backed Australia to lift their first T20 World Cup title. "Australia weren't the favourites because of their recent performances and T20I form. David Warner was one of the main parts of their team, especially in T20 cricket. He's a very aggressive batsman and is in good form, peaked at the right time.
"Although Steve Smith is struggling so far in this Australian line-up but they are still looking good. Their fast bowling attack is also looking good, in the knockouts Maxwell and Stoinis have been their fifth bowler and New Zealand will be eyeing on them (taking them on).
"But in general, Australia look very strong especially after the semi-final win. If you ask me 'who are the favourites for tomorrow'?, I think Australians have an edge for Sunday's final," Akram said.
The 55-year-old also talked about the surface at the Dubai Intenational Cricket ground - the venue where the all-important final will be played. Notably, team batting second in the evening games have won 16 times in last 17 matches. Chennai Super Kings (CSK) had defeated Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the IPL 2021 after batting first on October 15.
"That's not fair (toss & dew factor influencing the results). They (match officials) have to come up with some ideas. They can't afford to cover the stadiums but give a fair chance to both the sides.
"The toss will make an effect. What you don't want is whatever we have seen in this World Cup that you win the toss, 80-90% you win the game. These are very good odds for teams chasing and that's not fair," Akram added.