New Zealand and England set to lock horns in T20 series opener!
Expect New Zealand to register a narrow win over England!
Host New Zealand will be looking to get off to a good start when they take on England in the opening game of the T20I series played at Hagley Oval in Christchurch on Friday. New Zealand Captain Tim Southee will be hoping that the side can deliver a clinical performance with bat and ball in this opening fixture. The home side will be confident of doing well against England in this five-match T20I series. England will be looking to field their best combination for this opening game of the series. Captain Eoin Morgan will be hoping that young players can showcase their skills with bat and ball in this T20I series.
Tim Southee-led unit will be looking to continue their winning momentum in the T20 format when facing England in this opening game of the series. Earlier this year, New Zealand beat Sri Lanka in the three-match T20I series played in Sri Lanka. In the batting department, the side will be relying on the top-order trio of Colin Munro, Martin Guptill and Ross Taylor to deliver the bulk of the runs. Swashbuckling opener Colin Munro has been in excellent form in the format this year. He has accumulated 263 runs in 10 matches at an average of 26.3 with a strike rate of 151.14. Munro has smashed two half-centuries for New Zealand so far this season. Munro also smashed unbeaten 107 runs off 57 balls to help New Zealand XI beat England in the second warm-up T20 game played at Lincoln. He will be looking to put in a notable score for the side in this opening fixture. His opening partner, Martin Guptill, will be looking to find a form with the bat in this T20I series. He clearly struggled to produce any sort of runs for New Zealand in the T20I series played in Sri Lanka.
The team management will be hoping that Guptill can produce a decent score for the side in this game. Ross Taylor is the most experienced player in the batting department and will be looking to do well for the side in this five-match T20I series against England. So far this season, Taylor has scored 212 runs in 9 innings at an average of 30.28. Middle-order comprising of Colin de Grandhomme, James Neesham and Daryl Mitchell will need to produce runs for the side in this fixture.
Batting all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme has been in excellent form for New Zealand this season. In the bowling department, the onus will be on the likes of Trent Boult, Tim Southee, and Lockie Ferguson to make early inroads with the new ball. Captain Tim Southee was exceptional with the new-ball in the previous T20I series played against Sri Lanka. He will be looking to continue his good form in this series. Left-arm orthodox spinner Mitchell Santner and Leg-spinner Ish Sodhi will certainly play this game.
Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Ross Taylor, Tim Siefert (wk), Colin de Grandhomme, James Neesham, Daryl Mitchell, Tim Southee (captain), Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Lockie Ferguson.
Mitchell Santner, Ross Taylor, Daryl Mitchell, Colin Munro, Tim Seifert, Colin de Grandhomme, Martin Guptill, Lockie Ferguson, Scott Kuggeleijn, Ish Sodhi, TG Southee
The visitors will be well prepared for the opening game of the series after playing two warm-up games against New Zealand XI. England captain Eoin Morgan will be hoping that the side can do their basics well in this opening fixture. In the batting department, the side will be relying on the likes of Jonny Bairstow, Eoin Morgan and Dawid Malan to do the bulk of the scoring.
Jonny Bairstow showed excellent form for England in the warm-up game played against New Zealand XI. He smashed a blistering 78 not out off 45 balls to see England cruise to a comfortable win. Bairstow will be looking to continue his rich vein of form with the bat in this game. Captain Eoin Morgan has been in good form with the bat so far this season. Left-hander will be looking to make a notable contribution against New Zealand at Christchurch. Rookie opener Tom Banton will be looking to do well after perishing for low scores in the two warm-up games played against New Zealand XI. Middle-order comprising of Joe Denly, James Vince and Dawid Malan will be looking to contribute with crucial runs for England in this opening fixture.
The trio did put in decent scores for England in the warm-up games played at Lincoln. In the bowling department, the side will be relying on the likes of Chris Jordan, Tom Curran and Adil Rashid to provide crucial breakthroughs. Sam Curran and Joe Denly are other bowling options for England for this game
Eoin Morgan (captain), Sam Billings (wk), Joe Denly, James Vince, Dawid Malan, Tom Banton, Jonny Bairstow, Adil Rashid, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Chris Jordan.
Chris Jordan, Jonny Bairstow, Sam Billings, Lewis Gregory, Patrick Brown, Eoin Morgan, James Vince, AU Rashid, Tom Curran, Sam Curran, Dawid Malan
The wicket prepared for the game will be excellent for batting. The quick bowlers might get assistance off the pitch. The weather forecast for the game to be played on Friday is expected to have heavy rains with a fresh breeze.
Hagley Oval in Christchurch is going to host its debut T20I game between England and New Zealand. England will take heart from the fact they have won five games out of seven games played in New Zealand. On the other hand, home side will need to play exceptional cricket in order to beat England in this five-match T20I series.
The side that wins the toss would be looking to bowl first and restrict the opposition to a modest score. Due to rain expected during the game, both teams will prefer batting second in this contest.
Based on current form, New Zealand will be favorites to win their opening game against England. The home side will have a slight advantage as they are playing in their home conditions. With the likes of Colin Munro, Ross Taylor and Tim Southee in excellent form in the format this season, New Zealand will be tough to beat in this contest.
Expect New Zealand to register a narrow win over England!