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The land of Kiwis is set to be lit up with the beginning of the Cricket series between New Zealand and England. Fans have already gotten a glimpse of the excitement with two thrilling tour games. The first T20I match will be played on the 9th of February, 2013 at 06:00 GMT at Auckland. It promises to be a run scoring feast largely due to the smaller grounds and massive power hitting involved. New Zealand is coming back to cricket after their unexpected victory over the strong South Africa side. On the other hand, England lost their last series to India and would be looking to make up for it in this series.
New Zealand is a side undergoing some major changes under the leadership of Brendon Mcullum. New Zealand has a good pace bowling attack, but with injured Vettori, their spinners might go for some runs. Their batting has struggled in the past and it might improve in much familiar home conditions. Moreover, Ross Taylor is expected to make a comeback and this strengthens their batting to a great extent. New Zealand is an excellent fielding side with fresh legs and some agile fielders.
England has always been a side with more focus towards traditional form of Cricket. They have a different side for T20s, but they still have a formidable lineup. Alex Hales and Michael Lumb are good strikers and with a good middle order in Morgan and Buttler, they make a good batting lineup. They bat deep and have many options in bowling. Jade Dernbach has proved to be a little expensive in the past and that might present opportunities for Woakes and Meaker. Tredwell bowled well in India and would be oozing with confidence. England is a good team and beating them is not going to be an easy task.
Its opening game of the series and both teams would be under pressure to take the lead. New Zealand has a good side and comeback of Ross Taylor can really make some difference. They’d have to improve their batting to some considerable extent to challenge a good English bowling attack. England have a good bowling attack and some experience behind them. It’s cricket and the team who plays well on the day takes the match. If I had to bet, I’d place my money on England.
Winner: England, 1.752 @ Pinnacle Sports
The match would be player on one of the smallest grounds in the world and a high scoring game is definitely expected. Both teams have good batting lineups with Brendon Mcullum, Ross Taylor, Eoin Morgan and Michael Lumb in the lineup. But, the man who has played phenomenal cricket over the past year, both in domestic and international competitions is Alex Hales. Alex Hales hits the ball cleanly and scores runs quickly and with minimal amount of risk. Alex Hales is my pick for Man of the Match award.
Man of the Match: Alex Hales, 8.50 @ Bet365