About the Match
Bangladesh created history as they sealed a quarter-final berth in the world cup for the first time ever after defeating England and throwing them out of the tournament; with 7 points from 5 matches played, they are at the 4th position. They will now take on New Zealand, who have defeated all teams one by one to reach the top spot in Pool A with 10 points, on 13th March at Hamilton. The Kiwis have emerged as the strongest team in the group and it will be very interesting to see how Bangladesh can fare here against the hosts on Friday.
New Zealand beat Afghanistan comprehensively by 6 wickets as the bowlers restricted the opponents to a meagre 186 runs; player-of-the- match, Vettori was the chief architect of the Afghan downfall, taking 4 top-order wickets for just 18 runs. He was well supported by Boult, who picked up 3 wickets and the batsmen then chased down the target with ease. Skipper Brendon McCullum biffed a 19-ball 42 to help the team win; Guptil scored 57 from 76 to keep the scoreboard ticking. New Zealand has grown as a team and they are looking good going into the knock-out stage; their only test came against familiar foes Australia wherein they managed to scrape through to 1-wicket win. In that match, McCullum had scored a quick-fire 50 while Boult’s 5-27 and Vettori’s 2 wickets had restricted Australia to 151 runs. New Zealand’s winning combination looks good and they wouldn’t do anything to change that; this only means that they will perhaps not be testing their bench strength in the upcoming match so as to be cautious against the winning momentum of Bangladesh.
Bangladesh registered a historic win against England by a narrow margin 15 runs to make it to the quarter-finals; the batsmen had set a target of 275 for the opponents with Mahmudullah scoring his maiden ODI century to become the first Bangladeshi batsmen to do so in a world cup match. Mushfiqur Rahim who has been the most consistent batsman was particularly brutal as his 89 off 77 powered the side to set a good target. On the bowling front, Mortaza and Rubel Hossain produced inspired spells of pace bowling to help Bangladesh score the famous win that has ousted England from the race. Hossain picked up 4 wickets while Mortaza and Sabbir Rahman picked up 2 wickets each. In their match against Scotland, their bowling was put to test with Scotland managing 318 runs. However, the flat track and the 50+ scores from Tamim, Mahmudullah, Rahim and Shakib, took Bangladesh safely home with 11 balls to spare. They have received a shot in the arm with the recent victory and the squad looks well set to give their best in the upcoming match.
Both teams will look to iron out the flaws ahead of the knock-out stage; Bangladesh’s last match was simply superb, playing as a well-knit side and making it to the next stage. However, the Kiwis are a formidable force to reckon with and they will be eager to continue with their winning spree all the way through. While Bangladesh will benefit from the newly founded confidence, we feel that New Zealand is better placed to win this contest too.
New Zealand, 1.12 @ Bet365