Australia have headlined the series so far after winning all three matches hosted down under, that leaves both the Black Caps and England winless heading into the New Zealand leg of the tri-series. Back on home soil and up against a team who’ll most likely be without their skipper yet again, New Zealand surely have the upper hand in this battle.
It’s been a dominant display of cricket from the Australian cricket team so far in the series, now it’s New Zealand and England’s turn to try and salvage what is left of the fixture as we wonder across to Kiwi territory. There’s no doubting that New Zealand would want a redo of the first game in Sydney against a hungry Australian side that didn’t hold back on the night, they were absolutely savaged by the oppositions bowling attack which led to their downfall early on. It’s highly unlikely that you’ll see Martin Guptill, Colin Munro and Kane Williamson all score single-digit numbers in the same match again, especially on familiar surfaces which should suit their playing style. With England captain Eoin Morgan still in huge doubt to return anytime soon, this could hurt their chances of fighting their way back into the series without the Irishman’s middle order brilliance. Everything points to New Zealand heading into this match in Wellington, they’ve got the batting finesse to take down England as well as their lethal bowling attack that includes three potential match winners. England on the other hand have shown flashes of brilliance without taking control of the game, that’s been their biggest downfall so far in the series.
Both sides have very-similar top orders in the batting department – strong, powerful & aggressive stroke makers who 75 percent of the time will look to take on the bowlers at all costs. That can be both effective and catastrophic, unfortunately for England it has been the second of the two so far with Jason Roy and Alex Hales risking it all for little reward in the first two games in Sydney and Melbourne. That’s where England’s middle order will play a pivotal role if that is to happen again, one of Dawid Malan, James Vince and the aggressive Jos Buttler need to anchor the innings if they’re to post a respectable total. There’s not a lot you can do about the openers, their natural game is ‘see ball, hit ball’. The Black Caps are very-much the same in that context, Martin Guptill can hit a ball as long as anyone in International cricket and is one of the most crisp strikers in limited-overs & T20 cricket, while Colin Munro is a fearless & inventive batsman who’s been known to take a match away from the opposition on numerous occasions. On the flip side, they can be utterly-useless when they strikeout early, but that’s the risk teams take with these destructive hitters.
The skipper is all class when it comes to batting, Kane Williamson makes batting look easy at times but finds himself in a bit of a form-slump in this format of the game, scoring just 17 runs in his past three T20 Internationals. This is the perfect time for him to respond with a big score, on home turf looking for their first win of the series against a team coming off two losses. Front-line seam bowlers Trent Boult and Tim Southee should cause some havoc with the ball, especially if they bowl second under lights with the pair generating some serious swing. That could be where the match is won & lost for England, if the top order can’t handle Boult and Southee they’ll be in for another tough innings-rebuild which isn’t ideal for the middle order early in the innings. So much of the pressure will be on both the teams opening batting duo, they’re the marquee names in this format and have been known to put on an absolute spectacle when they start connecting. All in all it should be an entertaining hit out!
Top 5 fantasy picks | New Zealand | 4th match | Wellington
- Trent Boult
- Martin Guptill
- Kane Williamson
- Colin Munro
- Ish Sodhi
Wildcard pick – Tim Seifert
Top 5 fantasy picks | England | 4th match | Wellington
- Dawid Malan
- Jason Roy
- David Willey
- Adil Rashid
- Jos Buttler
Wildcard pick – Alex Hales
New Zealand (possible) – 1. Martin Guptill 2. Colin Munro 3. Kane Williamson (c) 4. Tim Seifert (wk) 5. Ross Taylor 6. Anaru Kitchen 7. Colin de Grandhomme 8. Mitchell Santner/Ben Wheeler 9. Tim Southee 10. Ish Sodhi 11. Trent Boult.
England (possible) – 1. Jason Roy 2. Alex Hales 3. Dawid Malan 4. James Vince 5. Jos Buttler (c & wk) 6. Sam Billings 7. David Willey 8. Chris Jordan 9. Liam Dawson/Liam Plunkett 10. Adil Rashid 11. Tom Curran/Mark Wood.