The New Zealand vs Pakistan match is on its way, what should you know before it starts?
New Zealand is expected to go into the game with the same lineup that has brought it many successes, though with one change. The Kiwis will likely include Michael Bracewell in place of Mitchell Santner to counter Pakistan’s assertive pace attack. His inclusion will also bring variety to the Kiwi’s spin attack, given that Pakistan’s batters have a couple of left-handed batters in the first six.
New Zealand’s campaign began with Devon Conway producing a superb 94 off just 58 balls in the game against Australia, Glenn Phillips producing an incredible tone in the game against Sri Lanka and ended with Kane Williamson producing a superb 61 off just 35 balls in the game against Ireland amid criticism for low hitting percentage.
A pair of experienced pacers, Tim Southee and Trent Boult, will have to show their A-game before a rejuvenated Pakistan batting order. Locky Ferguson, Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi will be equally important to the team. New Zealand should not take Pakistan lightly, as the latter recently beat Kane Williamson and the boys and won a tri-series in New Zealand.
Pakistan will want to continue playing with the same team as last week’s game, which includes five true batters, three all-rounders and three pacers. However, they may want to make changes to their starting lineup, adding the explosive Mohammad Haris instead of Babar to use the powerplay. Meanwhile, Babar, who is struggling in Australia, can bat when the ball is a little old and does a little less, which means he can go in the third or fourth lineup.
Although everything was in Pakistan’s favor before the semifinals, the players will have to show their best game against New Zealand. Babar Azam and Muhammad Rizwan will have to redeem themselves on Wednesday, and if they succeed, Pakistan can work wonders.
Mohammad Harris, Shan Masood, Shadab Khan and Iftikhar Ahmed have contributed greatly to the middle order, and they will need to continue to strike the right chords at the knockout stage. Shaheen Afridi, Naseem Shah and Hari Rauf will play a key role in containing the New Zealand batters.
New Zealand has regained the effectiveness that has won so many matches in the last few months, and against Pakistan, they are likely to perform much better than they did in the last game between the two countries on Wednesday.
Various bowling options are a strength of the hosts, and in this tense encounter, which should turn out to be very tense, they will probably play a crucial role, since it is so important to knock off Mohammad Rizwan and Babar Azam early on. Consider that the Black Caps will win and advance to the World Cup finals once again.