Afghanistan take on New Zealand in Match 13 of the ICC Cricket World Cup in Taunton on Saturday and the Black Caps are looking to make it three wins from three outings.
Afghanistan have lost both their matches so far. They proved to be no match for Australia in their first match of the tournament at Bristol, going down by 7 wickets but they had their chances against Sri Lanka in a rain affected match at Cardiff on Tuesday.
Afghanistan bowled Sri Lanka out for 201 thanks largely to Mohammad Nabi who returned figures of 4/30 in his 9 overs. The target was revised to 181 from 41 overs after rain had caused a lengthy delay but Afghanistan came up 34 runs short. Najibullah Zadran top scored with 43 but only three other batsmen made it to double figures.
Najibullah Zadran is top scorer for Afghanistan with 94 runs, Gulbadin Naib is next best with 54. Mohammad Nabi is their leading wicket taker with 4 and Rashid Khan has 3.
This was how Afghanistan lined up against Sri Lanka.
Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Mohammad Nabi, Gulbadin Naib (capt), Najibullah Zadran, Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Hamid Hassan
New Zealand held their nerve in what proved to be a tense run chase against Bangladesh at The Oval on Wednesday. After bowling Bangladesh out for 244 (Matt Henry 4/47) the Black Caps looked in control of the chase at 160/2 with Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor well set at the crease. Williamson fell for 40 and Bangladesh began to take regular wickets. Taylor went on to top score with 82 but there were some nervous moments and the Black Caps had just 2 wickets in tact when victory as sealed in 47.1 overs.
New Zealand are now looking for a third straight win after starting their campaign with a 10 wicket hiding of Sri Lanka in Cardiff. They can be backed at 8/1 to win the tournament and 5/2 to reach the final.
Martin Guptill is top run scorer for New Zealand with 98 runs, Colin Munro and Ross Taylor have both scored 82. Matt Henry has taken 7 wickets so far, Lockie Ferguson has 4 and Trent Boult 3.
This was how New Zealand lined up against Bangladesh.
Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Kane Williamson (capt), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (wk), James Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Matt Henry, Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult
Head to Head
The only previous meeting between these sides came in the pool stage of CWC 2015 in Napier where Afghanistan were bowled out for 186 and New Zealand chased it down for a 6 wicket victory.
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New Zealand 1/6
Note prices quoted are correct at the time of publication but are subject to change.
This is the first game to be staged at Taunton and it looks very hard to make a case for a surprise.
A small and speculative betting interest comes in the shape of Martin Guptill to be named Man of the Match. The Black Caps opener can be very destructive on his day and if he gets off to flyer he could be New Zealand’s match winner.
Man of the Match Martin Guptill at 17/2.