Pool stage team of the tournament

Before the knockout stage of the Cricket World Cup, look back at those who performed in the pool stage

Now that the pool stage of the 2015 Cricket World Cup is complete, it seems an appropriate time to select our second team of the tournament.

Ten of the 11 players selected will feature in the knockout stage, with a lone Zimbabwean in the middle order signing off on his international career in style.

So did we get it right? Scroll through our XI and decide for yourself. 

1. Brendon McCullum (c) – New Zealand


Runs: 257 | Ave: 42.83 | SR: 187.59 | HS: 77 (25) v England in Wellington

Started the tournament in kamikaze fashion with three blistering half-centuries in four matches, but has since made 42 against Afghanistan and only eight against Bangladesh. Regardless, the Black Caps skipper has continued to score at an electric rate, and his aggressive leadership has seen the tournament co-hosts reach the quarter-finals undefeated.

2. Tillakaratne Dilshan – Sri Lanka


Runs: 395 | Ave: 79.00 | SR: 98.25 | HS: 161 v Bangladesh in Melbourne

One part of Sri Lanka’s formidable top four, Dilshan has returned to his slashing and dashing best, peeling off two centuries after a slow start to the competition. At 38, the right-hander is getting better with age, producing his highest one-day score of 161 not out against Bangladesh as his side lost just one wicket at the MCG. On five occasions his sly off-spinners have taken a wicket, giving him the edge ahead of India’s Shikhar Dhawan.

3. Kumar Sangakkara (wk) – Sri Lanka


Runs: 496 | Ave: 124.00 | SR: 119.51 | HS: 124 v Scotland in Hobart

The Sri Lankan wicketkeeper-batsman broke new ground when he became the first player in ODI history to score four consecutive centuries. Sangakkara battered Bangladesh, eviscerated England, assaulted Australia and squashed Scotland to go top of the run-scorers tally, and is a big reason why Sri Lanka fans believe they can beat South Africa on Wednesday in Sydney.

4. Mohammad Mahmudullah – Bangladesh


Runs: 344 | Ave: 86.00 | SR: 82.89 | HS: 128 not out v New Zealand in Hamilton

This had been the 29-year-old’s breakthrough tournament, posting his maiden ODI ton against England before backing it up with 128 not out against the competition’s best all-round attack – New Zealand. If the Tigers are to cause one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history and eliminate defending champions India, Mahmudullah and his batting unit will need to stand up once again.

5. AB de Villiers – South Africa


Runs: 417 | Ave: 83.40 | SR: 144.29 | HS 162 not out v West Indies in Sydney

The world’s best batsman admitted he can’t win the World Cup alone, but man, he’s going pretty close driving solo. A lone hand of 77 almost guided his charges to victory against Pakistan, and his rapid effort against the UAE left him one run short of another World Cup ton. But as breathtaking as his unbeaten 162 against the Windies was, de Villiers and the Proteas will be solely judged on how they perform in the knockout stage.  

6. Brendan Taylor – Zimbabwe


Runs: 433 | Ave: 72.16 | SR: 106.91 | HS 138 v India in Auckland

In his last outing for Zimbabwe after signing a Kolpak deal with English county club Nottinghamshire, Brendan Taylor left the international stage with a bang. First, he laced Ireland for 121 in Hobart before a final act of 138 against India in Auckland. Taylor finishes his international career with the most centuries for his country, most runs in a single World Cup for Zimbabwe, and the most World Cup sixes.

7. Glenn Maxwell - Australia


Runs: 257 | Ave: 64.25 | SR: 190.37 | HS: 102 v Sri Lanka in Sydney

Wickets: 3 | Ave: 40.00 | SR: 38.00 | ER: 6.31 | BB: 1-7 v New Zealand in Auckland

Maxwell’s stunning form with the bat has him pip New Zealand’s Corey Anderson for the allrounder spot. Following his only failure against New Zealand, the Victorian belted Afghanistan for 88 at the WACA before scoring his maiden ODI ton in imperious fashion in Sydney, the second fastest World Cup ton and fastest one-day hundred for Australia.

8. Daniel Vettori – New Zealand

Daniel Vettori in action during the 2015 World Cup // Getty Images

Wickets: 13 | Ave: 13.69 | SR: 25.5 | ER: 3.21 | BB: 4-18 v Afghanistan in Napier

Evergreen slow left-armer Daniel Vettori proved his worth when he started the rot against Australia in the Eden Park epic on the last day of February. The 36-year-old then returned figures of 4-18 to skittle Afghanistan to stroll in to the quarter-finals as the most economical bowler in the tournament.

9. Mitchell Starc – Australia


Wickets: 16 | Ave: 8.50 | SR: 13.8 | ER: 3.67 | BB: 6-28 v New Zealand in Auckland

The leading wicket-taker in the tournament with 16 scalps, Starc also owns the best strike rate (13.8) and average (8.50). The lanky left-armer tore through New Zealand, chipped away at England, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka, then overpowered Scotland in Tasmania.

10. Trent Boult – New Zealand


Wickets: 15 | Ave: 15.60 | SR: 22.4 | ER: 4.17 | BB: 5-27 v Australia in Auckland

New Zealand’s leading man with the ball, Boult has the new kookaburra hooping around corners during the World Cup. His 15 wickets have come at 15.60 runs apiece, and alongside right-arm seamer Tim Southee, the pair form the most lethal opening duo in one-day cricket.

11. Mohammed Shami – India

Mohammed Shami

Wickets: 15 | Ave: 12.60 | SR: 17.2 | ER: 4.39 | BB: 4-35 v Pakistan in Adelaide

Averaging three wickets every game, Shami is replicating Glenn McGrath’s feats of the 2007 edition. Shami began the tournament with four wickets against Pakistan and two in the upset win over South Africa at the MCG, before striking thrice against West Indies, Ireland and Zimbabwe.