|Australia vs. New Zealand||Birmingham, England||15:00 IST, 9:30 GMT||A|
Preview: Australia vs. New Zealand, Match 2nd of the ICC Champions Trophy
Australia squad: Steve Smith (captain), David Warner, Aaron Smith, Pat Cummins, John Hastings, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Moises Henriques, Chris Lynn, Glenn Maxwell, James Pattinson, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade (wicketkeeper), Adam Zampa.
New Zealand squad: Kane Williamson (captain), Corey Anderson, Trent Boult, Neil Broom, Colin de Grandhomme, Martin Guptill, Tom Latham, Mitchell McClenaghan, Adam Milne, James Neesham, Jeetan Patel, Luke Ronchi (wicketkeeper), Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor.
Australia and New Zealand spearheaded by their majestic captains Steve Smith and Kane Williamson are set to lock horns in the 2nd match of this year’s ICC Champions trophy 2017. We are about to witness an intriguing battle between the Trans- Tasman rivals, led by their captains, both, world-class performers with the bat, although they go about their task in a very different manner in different situations.
Australia‘s Smith is a far cry from the usually calm and calculated New Zealander. As has been the case in recent years, the two always rise to the occasion when they are needed the most and they certainly will be needed in today’s encounter.
New Zealand has the advantage in this match as they have been playing games of this format recently while a majority of Australian players will be back to this format after four to five months. The conditions and format of this year’s Champions Trophy is a little tough but the team looks in good shape under the leadership of their captain Steve Smith.
Australia‘s biggest strength is their quick and strong seam attack. Steve Smith ruled out the possibility of playing Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, James Pattinson and Josh Hazlewood all together but any combination these four bowlers which are available in their lineup will be threatening to watch. New Zealand on the other hand too is also having problems of plenty on their hand. Luke Ronchi performed well against India in the practice match but hasn’t had much success in ODIs in recent times. But he, along with the smashing Martin Guptill, at the top of the order would make a good opening combination for the Kiwis. On the other hand Tom Latham has also done good job at the top of the order for New Zealand and it will be a difficult decision to pick between Latham and Ronchi. There is also the all rounder Corey Anderson in their ranks but the Kiwi’s biggest worry would be getting to the huge totals that majority of the team scores in ODI’s nowadays.
The opening of this year’s ICC Champions trophy also saw both the teams post totals past 300. Much will depend on the captain Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor in the middle order of the New Zealand Line up. Both the batsmen are in good form recently and will be given the task of carrying the team forward by keeping the scoreboard ticking in the middle stages of the innings. So the 2nd match of this year’s ICC Champions trophy will surely be thrilling to watch.