With just thirteen group stage matches remaining in the 2019 Cricket World Cup, we will see 2015 finalists New Zealand locking horns with five-time champions Australia.
Both teams find themselves sitting pretty within the top four of the table courtesy their consistent displays so far.
Australia have already qualified for the semifinals and will be looking to test their bench strength, while New Zealand will be aiming to bounce back after their shock loss against Pakistan.
The Kiwis need just one win from their remaining two matches and will be eager to register a morale-boosting win from what should be a cracking encounter.
There are no real favourites in tomorrow’s encounter at the fabled Lord’s.
But it should be interesting to see if the pressure to win badly would get to Kane Williamson’s side tomorrow.
New Zealand (Probable XI): Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Kane Williamson (C), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (WK), James Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Matthew Henry, Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult.
Australia (Probable XI): David Warner, Aaron Finch (C), Steven Smith, Usman Khawaja, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey (WK), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Jason Behrendorff, Adam Zampa.
Kane Williamson vs Mitchell Starc
Kane Williamson is the mainstay of the Kiwi line-up and carries the responsibility of leading the team and the batting line up.
The New Zealand skipper is a prolific batsman and has an enviable record of having amassed as much as 5969 runs from 145 matches. This comes at an average of 48.14 and at a very decent strike rate of 82.27.
The Kiwi talisman is primarily responsible for anchoring the innings and has been in golden nick in this World Cup edition, having scored a mammoth 414 runs.
Mitchell Starc has been wreaking havoc in this tournament and has been instrumental in Australia’s success. Aaron Finch would be relying on the New South Welshman pacer’s ability again.
With 164 wickets and an economy of 5, the left-arm quick averages a paltry 21.08 in ODI cricket. With these figures, Starc will definitely be a key factor for his team in this tournament.
This battle has the potential of being the blockbuster kind, and we feel that Starc might have a slight edge on the Lord’s wicket.
Trent Boult vs David Warner
Trent Boult has been a vital cog in the New Zealand bowling attack over the years. The left arm Kiwi pacer is adept at testing batsmen on all surfaces, and is an excellent fielder.
From 85 ODI matches, Boult has managed to prise out 156 wickets at a good average of 24.97. His economy rate is merely 5.03 and on the lower side, and speaks volumes about his ability and control.
Boult has managed to produce prodigious swing throughout this tournament and will be a definite force to reckon with, especially at the start of the innings.
David Warner has truly set England ablaze and has been vital for Australia so far, post his return to international cricket.
Warner has 4843 runs in 113 matches under his belt. He has an average of 45.26 and an excellent strike rate of 95.5 in ODI cricket.
The battle between Boult and Warner is billed to be an intriguing one. However, Warner has been in red hot form so far, and has taken the tournament by storm by plundering 500 runs.
Boult might find it a bit tough against the swash-buckling Aussie opener who starts off by treading ever so cautiously.
Hence, we expect Warner to come up trumps in this particular contest.
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This game is very tricky to predict.
Considering the fact that the Aussies have already qualified for the last four and might not be risking potential injuries to their main players, they would not be fielding their strongest eleven.
The Kiwis, however, would not be lacking in motivation to join their opponents. But, if New Zealand are to beat Australia, Williamson’s men will have to bring their A-game at Lord’s.
Team Cricwizz predicts that New Zealand would prevail over Australia tomorrow, and become the second team to reach the semifinals.
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