The clock is ticking for what would be a blistering battle between the two iconic teams as Mumbai's Wankhede Stadium is all set to unfold a story of two belligerent teams clashing against each other to write a history. The current edition of the 50-over cricket world cup is nearing its conclusion with the top four teams - India, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand are preparing for the summit clash.
Mumbai will host the first semi-finals on Wednesday - November 15 where the rivals India and New Zealand will go for a battle to enter the finals. India, which has a history of being a strong team in the league rounds, has entered the semi-finals after winning all the nine league matches while New Zealand finished the league with five victories. Ahead of the first semi-finals, the ardent Indian fans are hoping that Rohit Sharma's fleet will payback its defeat in the 2019 semi-finals to New Zealand.
As India is gearing up for the crucial match with powerful fleet and with more expectations, let's take a look at ten points that you should watch out for,
- In a head to head stats, India and New Zealand clashed ten times in the World Cups and New Zealand had won five times while India emerged victorious four times and the rest one match ended without a result.
- So far, India and New Zealand have faced off in 119 ODI matches, of which India has won 59 matches while the Blackcaps had won 50 matches. Notably, India has won 24 times when batting first and 35 times when batting second.
- Google Win probability has predicted that India has a 65 per cent chance to win this semi-final against New Zealand, thereby retaliating the Kiwis for the semi-final loss in the 2019 world cup season.
- According to reports, the pitch in the Wankhede Stadium has been considered as a heaven for batters due to its flat wicket. However, there are several predictions that India should play this match cautiously if it was pushed to chasing.
- As far as the weather is concerned, Mumbai is likely to witness a warm weather and during the night time, the city may witness gusts and there is no possibility of rain and thunderstorms in Mumbai during the match hours.
- It has also been reported that if India wins toss, it should opt to bat first as the team batting first at Wankhede has a clear advantage with the new ball swinging well under lights.
- India has defeated New Zealand in the league by four wickets and it collapsed the campaign and momentum of New Zealand. India is also hoping to defeat the Blackcaps in the semis to become the first team to enter the finals of this world cup.
- In the last five meetings, India has won four matches while New Zealand had won just once. As India is playing in its home and with a strong team, the men in blue is likely to win this uphill battle.
- It is pertinent to note that India has lost previous two semi-finals of the World Cup seasons 2015 and 2019 and the fans hope that India will change track and will avoid recording its hat-trick defeat in the semi-finals.
- With an impeccable record in this league tournament, India currently have the most wickets (85), best economy rate (4.5), best average (19.6), and best strike rate (26.2) among all teams in the World Cup.