In an electrifying match at the 2023 Cricket World Cup, New Zealand won the toss and elected to bowl first in Pune. The decision to bring in Tim Southee for the injured Lockie Ferguson adds an exciting twist to the New Zealand bowling lineup, as Southee makes his first appearance in this year’s World Cup. On the other hand, South Africa welcomes back the formidable Kagiso Rabada, who replaces Tabraiz Shamsi in their squad.
Both New Zealand and South Africa have established themselves as formidable teams in this World Cup, and a victory in this match would be a significant step towards securing a spot in the top four. South Africa’s only hiccup came in the form of an unexpected defeat to the Netherlands, but they have otherwise been a dominant force in the tournament. With the best net run-rate (NRR) among the ten participating nations, their batting lineup has been in top form, with Quinton de Kock consistently converting his starts into centuries, and Heinrich Klaasen providing the finishing touches. South Africa’s bowling attack, led by Kagiso Rabada and Marco Jansen, has also been impressive.
New Zealand had a perfect start to the tournament but has faced setbacks with a growing number of injuries, leading to consecutive defeats against India and Australia. In contrast, South Africa, despite a solid effort, experienced a narrow five-run loss in their previous clash against Australia. While they were handed a daunting target by Australia, New Zealand nearly pulled off a remarkable comeback, falling just five runs short.
Despite their recent defeats, New Zealand remains in good spirits. They boast a strong batting lineup, led by the young talent Rachin Ravindra. Their bowling, featuring the reliable duo of Matt Henry and Trent Boult, has been their key to success in previous matches.
Key Pointers for the NZ vs SA World Cup 2023 match:
- New Zealand won the toss and opted to bowl first.
- New Zealand enters the match on the back of two consecutive defeats.
- The two teams have met 8 times in World Cup history, with New Zealand winning six of those encounters.
- In the overall ODI head-to-head, South Africa holds a 41-25 advantage over New Zealand.
- Kagiso Rabada returns to the South African lineup, while Tim Southee makes his first appearance in this tournament for New Zealand.
- South Africa is currently placed second with 10 points, while New Zealand occupies the third position with eight points.