India vs New Zealand: Preview and Prediction
It will be the fifth match for both teams in their 2023 CWC campaign and both teams are coming in unbeaten as the Men in Blue and Blackcaps are yet to lose a match. The upcoming match between the two sides will certainly ensure that only one team will remain unbeaten unless rain spoils the party.
The Blackcaps are currently placed at the top of the standings with 8 earned points, whereas India is comfortably sitting just behind the Kiwis in the second spot with 8 points as well. However, the Blackcaps are enjoying big-margin wins, giving them a better net run rate compared to India.
Speaking about the injury concerns, India will most probably miss the services of Hardik Pandya, who picked up an injury on his left ankle, which got twisted in the last match against Bangladesh. On the other hand, the Blackcaps will miss skipper Kane Williamson, who fractured his thumb in the match against Bangladesh.
What have they done so far?
India has been in tremendous form so far, arguably the most consistent team in the tournament, alongside New Zealand. However, the match between the two sides will clearly determine which team is rock-solid and which may have some weaknesses when they face each other.
India played against Australia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. Australia was the only team that gave Indian fans some heart-stopping moments, but those moments were short-lived as Virat Kohli and KL Rahul comfortably pulled off the thriller.
Against Afghanistan, Rohit’s special knock marked his roaring comeback after getting out for a duck against the Aussies. Rohit scored his 7th ODI World Cup century against Afghanistan, followed by another outstanding performance against Pakistan, where he missed his century by just 16 runs. In the run chase against Bangladesh, Kohli stole the limelight with his 48th ODI century.
The Blackcaps emerged victorious in all their matches against England, Netherlands, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan so far. Tom Latham’s side shocked England in the opening match of the World Cup, followed by a 99-run win against Netherlands. They secured another comfortable 8-wicket victory against Bangladesh.
In their last match against Afghanistan, the Blackcaps initially struggled while batting first, losing four wickets with only 110 runs on the board. However, Latham and Glenn Phillips turned the tables and prevented another upset, winning by a hefty margin of 149 runs.
Head to Head Record
India and New Zealand have faced each other in 116 ODI matches, with India winning 58 times, while the Blackcaps have secured victory 50 times. One match between the two ended in a tie, and 7 matches resulted in a draw.
In WC history, they have encountered each other 9 times, with the Blackcaps leading India with 5 victories to India’s 3. One match was abandoned during the 2019 WC between these two heavyweights. India last won a WC match against the Kiwis in 2003, whereas the Blackcaps defeated India in the 2019 WC semi-finals with an 18-run margin.
Virat Kohli (India): Going by his current form and his previous records at Dharamsala and against the Blackcaps, Kohli will be the top contender to make some noise amidst the beautiful mountain ranges. Kohli, at Dharamsala, has scored 212 runs in 3 ODI innings with an average of 106, which includes an 85-run innings against the Blackcaps and one century against West Indies.
Kohli, against the Blackcaps, has accumulated 1433 runs in 29 ODI innings with an average of 55.11, thanks to 5 centuries and 8 fifties. In the ongoing tournament so far, Kohli has scored 259 runs in 4 innings with a magnificent average of 129.50, including two fifties and one century.
Tom Latham (New Zealand): Latham has been a key player for the Blackcaps for a while now and also played a very crucial knock in the last match against Afghanistan against a strong spin bowling attack on a spinning track. The southpaw scored 68 off 74 against Afghanistan.
Moreover, in 2016, India played an ODI against the Blackcaps in Dharamsala, in which Latham, while opening the innings, played an unbeaten innings of 79 runs. Nevertheless, not only his batting but also Latham has been doing well so far with his leadership qualities in the absence of Williamson.
India: Rohit Sharma ©, Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Ishan Kishan, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami
New Zealand: Devon Conway, Will Young, Rachin Ravindra, Daryl Mitchell, Tom Latham © (wk), Glenn Phillips, Mark Chapman, Mitchell Santner, Matt Henry, Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult
It will be the most competitive match for Team India thus far, as the Blackcaps have always troubled India in every format of the ICC Tournament with the 2019 semi-final loss against the same opposition still haunting the Indian fans.
The big challenge for India is to tackle the opening spell of Blackcaps pacers, who include Trent Boult and Matt Henry, both of whom have troubled Indian batters before while the likes of Ishan Kishan and Ravichandran Ashwin can offset the left-handers present in the Kiwis’ squad in the form of Rachin Ravindra, Mitchell Santner, Boult, Mark Chapman, and Devon Conway.