Two months is a long time in International cricket. Such is the frenetic nature of the Future Tour Programmes, that a lot can change within a space of a few days; let alone two months. Two months. Yep! This is precisely the period post which the Trans-Tasman rivals will once again lock horns in a series of white-ball Internationals; starting with the first of the three ODIs at the iconic Sydney Cricket Ground on Friday.
The last time these two sides met, the Kiwis were shellacked to the tune of 0-3 in the Test series with the Kane Williamson-led unit failing to field 11 fit cricketers on the field. But, since then, a lot of water has flown under the bridge. The BlackCaps suffered another whitewash in the home series against India where they were beaten 0-5 in the T20I rubber.
Captain Aaron Finch revealed in the pre-match presser that ace fast bowling pair of Pat Cummins [who was rested from the last ODI in South Africa] and Mitchell Starc, who missed the final ODI in order to attend the Women’s T20 World Cup final at the MCG, is all set to make their comeback into their starting XI.
Finch also revealed that he is looking at the trio of Labuschagne, Mitchell Marsh and D’Arcy Short to fulfil the role of the fifth bowler, which means that the Aussies may go in with just one spinner in Adam Zampa.
Probable XI- David Warner, Aaron Finch (C), Steven Smith, Marnus Labuschagne, D’Arcy Short, Mitchell Marsh, Alex Carey (WK), Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood/Kane Richardson.
The Kiwis were plagued with injuries and sickness during the Test tour Down back in December. But that is no longer the case now. With the likes of Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson all fit and firing, the BlackCaps will have a happy headache in choosing the makeup of their fast bowling unit.
As far as batting is concerned, Henry Nicholls and Martin Guptill will spearhead the opening unit followed by the trio of Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor and Tom Latham forming the backbone of the middle-order. Colin de Grandhomme, James Neesham will serve as seam-bowling all-rounders.
Probable XI – Martin Guptill, Henry Nicholls, Kane Williamson (C), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (WK), James Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Kyle Jamieson/Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson.
Who will win the match: Australia
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