England vs New Zealand: As we move closer towards the end of the league stage, the tournament is witnessing some exciting games, with high-octane action and drama. So far, it has only been Australia that has confirmed its spot in the semi-finals, with India and New Zealand almost in contention to qualify in the top 4s. India’s match is underway against Bangladesh and a win here will assure their berth in the semis. However, the big fight is for the 4th spot, where England and Pakistan are competing against each other for the final spot.
In their quest to qualify for the semi-finals, England will take on New Zealand in the 41st match of the ICC World Cup 2019., in what could be called as a virtual quarter-final. A win in this game for either of the teams will confirm their world cup semi-final spot. The match is set to be played at The Riverside stadium, Durham.
THE POMS FIRED WITH ALL THEIR MIGHT
Just when England was losing its track, they bounced back in fashion in their match against India. England were dominant in all departments of the game, with batsmen scoring crucial knocks to bowlers making it difficult for batsmen to play big shots. Even fielding was absolutely world-class. After displaying such brilliance on-field, England handed India their first ever defeat in the ICC World cup 2019. This emphatic win served as a reminder for all other teams about their dominance in the game. England will look to continue the momentum, and they need to do something similar against New Zealand too.
New Zealand, on the other hand, had one of the greatest starts in their world cup campaign. However, after staying unbeaten for the first 6 games, they fell flat in their previous two fixtures, by conceding back-to-back defeats. The bowlers have been on-par with their performance, winning them games, however, it is the batsmen who are yet to make a lasting impact The star batsmen have not been consistent enough to control the batting line-up and deliver big performances.
With the likes of Martin Guptill in the team, the expectations will be sky-rocketing and he needs to take the onus upon himself and fire from all cylinders. He had a wonderful run in the 2015 world cup, emerging as the highest run-getter.
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England and New Zealand have faced each other in a total of 89 matches, out of which the Blackcaps take a slight majority, with 43 wins, while England settling with 40 wins. In the last 4 years though, England has turned the tables with 7 wins, while New Zealand managed to win 4 games in a total of 11 matches played.
Total Matches: 89
New Zealand: 43
LAST 4 YEARS (APR 2015 – PRESENT)
Total Matches: 11
New Zealand: 4
The weather forecast predicts a slim to a negligible chance of showers during the course of the game. The skies will be covered in a thick cover of clouds. However, as the game progresses, the skies will slowly make way for the sun. The atmosphere will make for great cricketing conditions, with the temperature hovering between 14 degrees Celsius and 19 degrees Celsius. Humidity percentage will decrease significantly as the day progresses; starting at 60 it will come down to 45 towards the end of the day.
The pitch at Riverside Ground in Chester-le-Street is certainly a batsman’s paradise. The venue has been extra kind to the batsmen, not so supportive to the pacers and ruthless to the spinners. The pacers did receive help from the pitch on a few lucky occasions, but for the spinners, there seemed no hope. A high-scoring game is expected. The ideal thing to do on this ground is to bat first, however, the last game between Sri Lanka and South Africa, the later won the game with 76 balls to spare.
New Zealand will look to make a few necessary changes in an attempt to get back to winning ways. They will most likely replace Ish Sodhi with Matt Henry. Their primary area of concern still remains their batting, and especially their opening pair. Henry Nicholls came replaced Colin Munro but hasn’t been able to deliver it for the team.
Martin Guptill is yet to unleash himself. The onus again will be upon captain Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor to handle the batting unit. In the bowling, Ferguson has undoubtedly been their most successful bowler, by picking up 17 wickets. Even Trent Boult got a fifer in the previous match with contributions coming in from Kane Williamson too.
PROBABLE XI: Martin Guptill, Henry Nicholls, Kane Williamson (C), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (wk), Colin de Grandhomme, James Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi/Matt Henry, Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult.
England will mostly continue with their winning combination and may not make any changed to the team that played against India. Jason Roy made a heroic comeback to form against India, after an injury layoff. Even Jonny Bairstow was ecstatic, after scoring a magnificent ton. However, it is Joe Root who has been consistent enough for England with 476 runs.
Eoin Morgan will also be crucial for the match, in the middle-order. In the bowling department, Jofra Archer lived upto everyone’s expectations by taking 16 wickets. Even Mark Wood has been outstanding with 13 wickets in the tournament. Adil Rashid hasn’t been consistent enough with the ball in the tournament and it is about time that he delivers it for the team, in one of their crucial games in the tournament.
PROBABLE XI: Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan (C), Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler (wk), Chris Woakes, Liam Plunkett, Jofra Archer, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood
FANFIGHT FANTASY CRICKET TEAMS FOR ENGLAND vs NEW ZEALAND
PLAYERS TO WATCH OUT FOR
England – Jason Roy | New Zealand — Kane Williamson
TV – Star Sports
Match Timings – 15:00 IST; 10:30 local
PREDICTION: The prediction is for England to win the match