World Cup 2019: Michael Vaughan backs New Zealand against Pakistan in the big clash

World Cup 2019: Michael Vaughan backs New Zealand against Pakistan in the big clash

The game is particularly big for the Asians since a slip could end their dream of winning the second world title.

Michael Vaughan
Michael Vaughan. (Photo by Popperfoto via Getty Images via Getty Images)

The Cricket World Cup 2019 is set for a mega clash on Wednesday when former champions Pakistan take on 2015 finalists New Zealand at Edgbaston, Birmingham. The game is particularly big for the Asians since a slip could end their dream of winning the second world title. New Zealand, on the other hand, have remained unbeaten in all their games so far and a win against Pakistan will book a semi-final berth for them.

The Black Caps had close wins in their last two games against South Africa and the West Indies and on both occasions, it was back-to-back centuries from captain Kane Williamson that won it for them. As per history, however, New Zealand have a less encouraging record against Pakistan. The two have been playing each other in the World Cup since 1983 and out of eight meetings till 2011, Pakistan have won six while the Kiwis could win only two.

Pakistan fans not unhappy with Vaughan’s prediction

New Zealand had first beaten Pakistan in 1983 and their second victory came only in 2011. Pakistan have won six consecutive games in between. Michael Vaughan, former England captain who was left disappointed with his country’s 64-run loss to defending champions Australia on Sunday, threw his weight behind the New Zealanders for Wednesday’s game.

In a tweet, the social media-savvy expert said: “I am a Kiwi for the day …”. Vaughan has earned a bad name for having made a few wrong predictions in the past although his backing India in their games in this World Cup has paid off every time. The Pakistani fans were not complaining though and felt their team could win as a result of Vaughan’s prediction.

Besides New Zealand’s superior show in this World Cup, one reason why Vaughan might be supporting them to win is to keep Pakistan away from England. Pakistan will reach to seven points if they win at Edgbaston and that will put England under even bigger pressure to qualify for the semi-finals as Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are already on seven and six points, respectively. England have eight points from seven matches after losing two back-to-back games against the Lankans and Kangaroos.