NZ has won all three games it played but no team tested them the way they should have been. Today their strength as a team would be tested for sure by a strong Indian side. NZ is pretty balanced side, however opening batsmen in the form of Guptil and Munro look slightly out of touch. If they are to beat this current indian side openers need to give them a good solid start.
Middle order is in safe hands. Williamson the anchor and Taylor the stroke maker. Lower middle order is also solid in the form of Latham, Neesham and Grandhomme.
On the other side, India would be a little disappointed to see Dhawan the opener and century maker in last game, out for 2 weeks due a thumb injury. In fact it is a big blow to indian batting line up. However It would be interesting to see, who would fill in the spot, would it be pant or KL rahul?
It would be better to let KL rahul play at no. 4 while pant could open the innings.
Middle order still is a concern. It hasn’t been tested yet. So, early wickets for NZ and they would look to exploit a slightly weaker middle order.
Bowling department is well equipped with Bhuvi and Bumrah two pacers at the beginning followed by KUL-CHA in the middle phase and then Bhuvi and Bumrah again toward the back end of the innings. The only weak link for me is Hardik pandya as he bowls some good spells and then all of sudden leaks the runs.
So to cut short.
It is going to be a 55:45 affair.
Guess what! it may be a little surprising to you, but i believe NZ would prevail today.
55 in favour of NZ.
45 in favour of India.
It would be an even contest where NZ would prevail.
Williamson, Taylor and Guptil key players in batting department.
Bolt, Freuguson and henry in bowling department.
For India Top three minus Dhawan plus Pant key players.
Bhuvi, Bumrah and KUL-CHA in bowling department.
WC Match No. 18