New Zealand and Australia clash in the Cricket World Cup at Lords on Saturday, Australia have already secured a semi final place whilst the Black Caps still need another log point to make absolutely sure they join them.
New Zealand went in to Wednesday’s clash with Pakistan in Birmingham unbeaten but they went down by 6 wickets.
After winning the toss and opting to bat first New Zealand found big trouble early doors and at one stage they were 46/4. Kane Williamson helped steady the ship but when he went for 41 the Black caps were 83/5. The recovery was led by James Neesham who was unbeaten at the end on 97, Colin de Grandhomme made 64 and the innings closed on 237/6. On a turning deck New Zealand were still in the game but a Babar Azam century helped Pakistan get home with 5 balls to spare.
New Zealand now have an overall record of 5 wins, 1 defeat and 1 no result for a tally of 11 points. As it stands (at the time of writing) 12 points would secure a semi final place and after this New Zealand’s final match in the round robin comes against England on Wednesday next week.
In earlier games New Zealand beat Sri Lanka by 10 wickets, Bangladesh by 2 wickets, Afghanistan by 7 wickets and South Africa by 4 wickets. A scheduled meeting with India was completely washed out and they held on to beat West Indies by 5 runs.
Kane Williamson is top run scorer for New Zealand with 414, Ross Taylor has 203 and James Neesham has 173. With the ball Lockie Ferguson has taken 15 wickets, Trent Boult has 9 and Matt Henry has 8.
This was how New Zealand lined up against Pakistan last time out.
Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Kane Williamson (capt), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (wk), James Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Matt Henry, Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult
Australia are already assured of a place in the semi finals after a 64 run victory over England at Lords on Tuesday. Australia lost what was considered to be a crucial toss but opening pair Finch and Warner once again came to the party, putting on 123 for the first stick before Warner fell for 53. Finch went on to make 100 although having looked likely to post well in excess of 300 the Australian innings lost momentum and closed on 285/7.
The Australian bowlers tore into England with Behrendorff striking with the second ball of the first over and Starc removed Joe Root in the fourth over. Behrendorff went on to return figures of 5/44 from his 10 overs and Starc, who bowled 8.4 overs, was also mightily impressive with 4/43 as England were bowled out for 221.
Australia now have 6 wins and 1 defeat against their name. Earlier results saw them beat Afghanistan by 7 wickets and West Indies by 14 runs. They lost to India (36 runs) and beat Pakistan by 41 runs, Sri Lanka by 87 runs and Bangladesh by 48 runs.
David Warner is leading run scorer for Australia with 500, Aaron Finch and has made 496 and Steve Smith has 282. With the ball Starc has taken 19 wickets and Cummins has 11.
This was how Australia lined up against England last time out.
David Warner, Aaron Finch (capt), Usman Khawaja, Steven Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey (wk), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Jason Behrendorff
Head to Head
The teams have met 136 times with Australia winning 90, New Zealand have won 39 with 7 no results.
In the 2015 World Cup New Zealand edged a thriller by 1 wicket in Auckland in the pool stage. The teams went on to meet in the final in Melbourne and Australia cruised to a 7 wicket victory.
The Betting, Click here for all markets
New Zealand 15/10
Note prices quoted are correct at the time of publication but are subject to change.
New Zealand need to look at their top order which has generally failed to fire and we might well see changes in their line up. Meanwhile the first part of Australia’s mission has been accomplished so the pressure is off although finishing top of the table is sure to appeal.
When Australia played England at Lords recently the bulk of the wickets went to the faster bowlers and we look to Trent Boult to beat his quote in the Player Performance market where 1 point is awarded per run, 10 per catch and 20 per wicket.
Player Performances, Trent Boult , over 39.5 points at 9/10
Remember you can have your own say on all this week’s matches on our discussion forum