ICC World Cup 2019: Match 29, Windies vs New Zealand, Preview – Kiwis edge closer to confirming a semi-final berth
Windies are known to do the unthinkable and have shown good potential to not write them away.
Updated - Feb 19, 2020 6:07 pm
A sensational batting performance from Windies saw them overpower the Kiwis in the warmup game leading up to the World Cup. But in the last three weeks, tides have turned dramatically in favour of the side from the Pacific, that is currently on top of the table and another couple of wins could potentially confirm their place among the top two.
Windies promised a lot heading into the tournament, many even expected them to enter the semifinals. However, the team looks far away from achieving that dream right now with just three points in five games. They do have a good net run-rate despite the humiliation at the hands of Bangladesh and a string of good results from here on could still make a strong case for them.
Not winning this game could really put them in a stranglehold and this is perhaps the worst time for the Caribbean men to face the most successful team in the tournament. Yet, West Indies are known to do the unthinkable and have shown enough potential to not write them away.
Tim Southee will have to wait longer for his opportunity as Kane Williamson doesn’t seem interested in tinkering with the XI. Matt Henry, Lockie Ferguson and Trent Boult have been outstanding thus far and are receiving good support from Grandhomme and Neesham. Williamson and Ross Taylor have consistently been amongst the runs with the only concern being Tom Latham’s form. Mitchell Santner will once again play ahead of Ish Sodhi.
Colin Munro, Martin Guptill, Kane Williamson (C), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (wk), James Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Matt Henry, Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult.
The Universe Boss is due a big score and Evin Lewis finally found some form in the previous game. The likes of Nicholas Pooran, Shai Hope and Shimron Hetmyer are chipping in with good contributions, but not significant enough to win them games. Kemar Roach could replace Shannon Gabriel in the XI and Carlos Brathwaite too is expected to return in place of Darren Bravo.
Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, Shai Hope (wk), Nicholas Pooran, Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Holder (C), Carlos Brathwaite, Andre Russell, Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas, Kemar Roach
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Focus will be on
Martin Guptill (New Zealand)
The highest run-scorer in the 2015 edition, Martin Guptill is yet to find his feet in this tournament. He and Colin Munro smashed home a mediocre target against Pakistan and apart from that, he hasn’t looked at his best. Watching the highlights of what he did to the same team in the 2015 World Cup quarterfinals could perhaps help the 32-year-old opener.
Shimron Hetmyer (Windies)
Shimron Hetmyer has some good starts to his name, but that won’t do any good for his reputation. He needs some big scores and although it won’t get easy against a potent Kiwi attack, he could target some of their medium pacers. He loves playing the medium pacers and the only spinner in their lineup is a left-arm bowler (Mitchell Santner), another bowler he would want to target.
Head to head
Matches Played – 64 | New Zealand won – 27 | Windies won – 30 | No result – 7
74.28 – Kane Williamson’s batting average in England. It is also the only country where he has scored more than 1,000 ODI runs apart from his home country.
TV – Star Sports
Live Streaming– Hotstar
Match Timings – 18:00 IST; 13:30 local