Cricket enthusiasts around the world are eagerly counting down the days to the much-anticipated ICC ODI World Cup 2023, which is scheduled to commence on October 5 in India. The high-profile tournament, set to be a cricketing spectacle, will see a clash of titans as England and New Zealand, the finalists of the 2019 World Cup, face off in the opening game.

As the excitement builds, cricket experts and former players have begun sharing their insights and predictions for potential winners and standout team combinations in the tournament. Joining the chorus of cricketing pundits, former South African skipper Faf du Plessis recently shared his thoughts on the favourites for the global showpiece event.

Du Plessis’ Top Picks

Du Plessis, a Proteas icon, voiced his admiration for his own nation’s cricketing prowess, naming South Africa as a strong contender. He also highlighted the formidable challenge posed by the Indian team in their home conditions. Furthermore, the 39-year-old pointed to Australia’s track record of success in ICC events, making them another team to watch out for.

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“I think South Africa has got a really good side. It will be hard to get past a team like India in home conditions. The other team you can never write off is Australia, with them being so successful in ICC events,” Du Plessis remarked in a conversation with the International Cricket Council (ICC).

India and Australia: Proven Champions

Notably, South Africa, despite being a powerhouse in world cricket, have never claimed an ODI World Cup title. Their closest attempt came in 1999 when they reached the final but narrowly lost to Australia in a thrilling encounter.

In contrast, India have lifted the ODI World Cup trophy twice, under the leadership of Kapil Dev in 1983 and MS Dhoni in 2011. Meanwhile, Australia stands tall as the most successful team in World Cup history, having clinched the title five times. Their victories came in 1987 and an unprecedented three consecutive triumphs in 1999, 2003, and 2007. Australia’s most recent World Cup conquest occurred in 2015.

Also READ: Aussie great Matthew Hayden names his India squad for ODI World Cup 2023

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