About the Match
Australia took a 1-0 series lead against New Zealand by winning the first ODI by a whopping 68 runs; the two teams will now face each other in the 2nd ODI at Canberra on 6th December. Batting first, the hosts accumulated 324 runs on board, which the bowlers went on defend with ease; after a terrible performance at the tests last month against the Proteas, the Aussies have come back to form and look well poised to continue with their winning momentum; on the other hand, New Zealand who faced humiliation in the first match, now must win this upcoming game to keep the series alive. It needs to be seen which team can rise above its weaknesses and emerge victorious on Tuesday.
Steve Smith led from the front as he smashed 164 runs off 157 deliveries in the first match against the Kiwis; his knock saw him punch 4 sixes and hit 14 boundaries that kept the scoreboard ticking for the hosts. Middle-order batsmen Travis Head and Matthew Wade played contributed well with 52 and 38 runs respectively but others like Finch, Bailey and Mitchell Marsh failed to impress. David Warner started the innings with 24 off 29 but after his dismissal in the 10th over, the burden fell on Smith to save them from yet another collapse.
The bowlers then combined their skills well, defending 324 runs with conviction; Josh Hazlewood was the pick of the bowlers as he took 3-49 while other speedsters like Marsh, Cummins and Starc provided regular breakthroughs. Spinner Adam Zampa dismissed two opponents and helped demolish the Kiwis for 256 all-out, and win the match by 68 runs.
They have a strong pace attack that can be a tough nut to crack; the batting depends on couple of players but they definitely have a talented lot that can set stiff targets or chase one comfortably.
The batsmen put up a dismal effort in the first match during the chase for 325; barring Guptill who posted a heroic 114 off 102, and good knocks by Colin Munro who scored 49 runs, James Neesham and Henry down the line, all others fell for single digits leading to a total collapse by the 45th over. Williamson and Tom Latham are expected to do better in the upcoming game, and they have all-rounders like Santner and Grandhomme, who can try to up their ante in order to help the team perform well with bat and ball.
Earlier, pacemen Matt Henry and Trent Boult picked up 2 wickets each while Neesham dismissed 2 opponents with his clever variations; Santner and Grandhomme stifled the Aussies with their economical spells but couldn’t provide any breakthroughs with the wickets. Although they did well with the ball, they can try to strategize better in the do or die match on Tuesday.
Overall, they have experienced players in the batting line-up, who can put their best foot forward here; the bowlers could gel well as a unit and try to outwit the Aussies in their own backyard here.
While Australia has the psychological advantage after taking the 1-0 lead, the Kiwis won’t be far behind in trying to use their talents to dominate the hosts. The match could swing either way but we feel that Australians will yet again prevail and take the series.