2019 World Cup: Men in Blue to play against New Zealand tomorrow

Chennai: With wins against South Africa and Australia in the first two matches, India has started its World Cup campaign on a successful note.

Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Hardik Pandya, Virat Kohli and even KL Rahul has got among the runs and while the batting looks strong, one major test that awaits them is the contest against New Zealand.

Kohli’s men faces the Kiwis at Trent Bridge tomorrow in an all-important clash between the Indian batsmen and the strong pace attack of the men in black.

India has had recent success against New Zealand when they blanked them 4-1, in the ODI series played during February this year, but the batsmen struggled to get going in pace-friendly conditions. It was on display yet again during the warmup game recently between the two sides ahead of the world cup where the Trent Boult led side dismissed India for a paltry 179 all out.

Now with similar conditions in the offing at Nottingham, swing threat awaits India. In such conditions, there are few bowlers in world cricket who can make the ball talk like Boult. He has reaped success, bowling to India’s openers in recent times, where they have collapsed to swing. He will once again come all guns blazing in the game. Lockie Ferguson, Matt Henry and James Neesham has also been consistent so far.

However the contest between Shikhar Dhawan and Trent Boult will be missed. Dhawan has had troubles facing Boult but he will not play in the game after suffering a fracture in the finger that ruled him out for three weeks. It is also a huge setback for India and KL Rahul will open the innings against Rohit Sharma. t remains to be seen who among Vijay Shankar and Dinesh Karthik makes it into the playing XI.

The top-order for New Zealand so far has been consistent with Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson chipping in with runs but it remains to be seen how they perform against Bhuvneshwar and Bumrah.

Overall it is a contest between two unbeaten sides so far in the tournament and an exxciting battle between the pacers and the batsmen.

Heavy rain threatens to play spoilsport when India faces New Zealand at Trent Bridge on Thursday. There have been persistent showers across United Kingdom for the past two days and the local Met department has issued a warning for the residents. A Yellow Warning for rain is in force in the Nottingham area for most of this week.

 

Aaditya Anand M