Australia and New Zealand will do battle in the Cricket World Cup this Saturday night from 10.30pm (AEST). The Aussies have already punched their ticket into the semi-finals while the Black Caps need only one more point from two games to assure their path.
We take a look at the big game and give our betting tips below!
With 6 wins and just 1 loss through their 7 games so far, Australia sit on top of the World Cup round robin table with 12 points. They have already booked their place in the semi finals, as the fifth placed team, Bangladesh, sit on just 7 points with two games to play.
The Aussies proved to strong for England in their last match, with the win moving them to move to the top of the table. Batting first, Aaron Finch and David Warner got the team off to another great start with yet another 100 run opening partnership, their third of the tournament and the fifth in a row that has surpassed 50.
The Aussie middle order looked ominous at times with Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith and Alex Carey all getting good starts, however, Australia managed just 285, which many thought wouldn’t be enough against the dynamic England batting line-up.
However, quick wickets at the start of the English innings by Mitch Starc and Jason Behrendorff quickly turned the match in Australia’s favour. England fell to 4/53 in the 14th over and lost steady wickets throughout the innings to be bowled out for just 221. Behrendorff and Starc claimed 9 of the 10 wickets.
Both of the Black Caps openers in Martin Guptill and Colin Munro have really struggled against the swinging ball early in the innings. Munro might struggle to keep his spot, but still back Starc to have another big impact here.
New Zealand have not made a single change in their line-up through seven games of the round robin format, although a change could be on the way after the top order failed once again against Pakistan in their last match. Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Ross Taylor and Tom Latham were all dismissed cheaply as the Black Caps compiled just 237 runs batting first.
Pakistan chased the total down with five balls to spare as Babar Azam notched up his first hundred of the tournament.
Top order batsman Henry Nicholls has been waiting patiently throughout the first seven games of the tournament and looks certain to get his opportunity against Australia in favour of the struggling Munro. At $7, we think he is great value to top the Black Caps run scoring list.
The Aussies start as firm favourites here after being nearly untouchable through their seven games so far. As good as they have been, their middle order still looks a little shaky and so much relies on the opening partnership. It will be interesting to see if New Zealand decide to select out of favour paceman Tim Southee, who has given both of the Australian openers some trouble in the past.
Either way, it’s hard to bet against the Aussies here. Their bowling unit, particularly Mitch Starc, is almost a lock to pick up a wicket in his first few overs, and with how ODI’s are played these days, its incredibly tough to come back from that.
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