Published: Sat, June 29, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Australia v New Zealand

Australia v New Zealand

In New Zealand's last match, they were narrowly beaten by Pakistan in a tight and exciting encounter.

Colin de Grandhomme was equally good and got his second half-century of the tournament in the last game.

The scouting report on Saturday's opponent at Lord's will have been impressive. The batting has been a major concern for New Zealand as the side is much dependent on skipper Kane Williamson.

The Australians lead the standings, one point above the Kiwis.

Jason Behrendorff and Nathan Lyon both came into the side for that match and bowled well so there is every chance that they will retain their place ahead of Coulter-Nile and Zampa although further rotations can not be ruled out. Matthew Hayden scored a 100-ball 103 as the holders amassed 348-6 before the Black Caps folded up for 133 in 25.5 overs. His usual new-ball partner Pat Cummins has 11.

Having picked 15 wickets in six matches at an average of 17.80, an economy rate of 4.97 and a strike rate of 21.4, New Zealand's Lockie Ferguson is their highest wicket-taker of the tournament.

Barring the defeat against India, defending champions Australia have done nothing wrong in this tournament, becoming the first team to qualify for the semifinals.

The bowlers have successfully defended 307, 334, 381, and 285 in their last four matches, all but one after being sent in to bat first.

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Australia (Playing XI): Aaron Finch (C), David Warner, Steven Smith, Usman Khawaja, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey (WK), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa and Jason Behrendorff.

Williamson has 414 runs at 138 in five innings here.

The fourth week of the Cricket World Cup has truly seen the tournament come to life as we approach the business end of the group stage.

"It will be a really good atmosphere".

As for Australia, they have shown improvement with every passing game. The opening pair- Martin Guptill and Colin Munro have been entirely out of form which has put pressure in the middle order. A blockbuster clash with India was washed out and signs of vulnerability were there in the thrilling victories against South Africa and West Indies that preceded the Edgbaston loss.

Only two - Virat Kohli and Carlos Brathwaite - have been fined for dissent, while others have received small reprimands for minor incidents. "We know how they go about the game", he said. "The nature of the game is you're going to have lean trots here and there, but it's all about the quality of the player". While, New Zealand may go for wicket-keeper batsman Henry Nicholls in place of under-performing Tom Latham. That should be enough time for some players to refresh.

One of the most intense rivalries in the field of sports is that of the Trans-Tasman neighbours Australia and New Zealand.

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