After shaking up England with their bowling attack, Afghanistan will be keen to improve their batting against New Zealand to win the game. They will be thinking of a win, and they have that potential. On the other side, New Zealand is heading up to MCG with the confidence of winning against the hosts in the first game. Undoubtedly, the contest will be interesting as Afghanistan now has the world-class talent to fight New Zealand.
Ground: MCG, Melbourne
Date: October 26, 2022
Time: 1.30 PM IST / 08:00 AM GMT / 07:00 PM LOCAL
MCG is for seam and swing. Especially with the weather that prevails in Melbourne currently. Batting gets easier as the innings progress.
Probable Playing XIs
Finn Allen, Devon Conway (WK), Kane Williamson (C), Glenn Phillips, Mark Chapman, Jimmy Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson, Tim Southee
Mohammad Nabi (C), Najibullah Zadran, Rahmanullah Gurbaz (WK), Azmatullah Omarzai, Darwish Rasooli, Fazalhaq Farooqi, Hazratullah Zazai, Ibrahim Zadran, Mujeeb ur Rahman, Naveen ul Haq, Rashid Khan
Captain: Rashid Khan
Rashid Khan will be taunting New Zealand batters. With his kind of variations, he is surely a wicket-taker against quality batting sides. The long boundaries will fetch him a great opportunity to get a big game.
Vice-captain: T Boult
T Boult’s s swing will be dangerous for the Afghan batters. With the conditions that favour swing bowling, T Boult is the number one option for the vice-captain.
Wicketkeeper: D Conway, R Gurbaz
D Conway is for the kind of form he is in at present.
R Gurbaz will be a dasher with the new ball batting. If he gets over Four overs, he will score a high score.
Batters: I Zadran, Najibullah, G Phillips
The technically sound I Zadran had a good first game, and he will be able to continue the same.
N Zadran is a destructive batter in the middle who has got his name etched for his aggression. The time he walks in to bat will be ideal for batting.
G Phillips getting in at No. 4 will be well-suitable for scoring runs at these conditions.
All-rounders: M Nabi, J Neesham
M Nabi is the trump card for Afghanistan. He is so economical. At the same time, batters who find R Khan and M Rahman difficult to bat will try to get over M Nabi. But Nabi’s s tactical bowling will be equally dangerous.
J Neesham’s batting slot is more attractive for run-making. He did his best at their opener. And he will go with the flow.
Bowlers: T Southee, T Boult, Rashid Khan, F Farooqi
Farooqi has been underrated because of the limelight that has been on Rashid and Mujeeb. He is a stellar bowler who will make use of the new ball.
T Southee is a natural wicket-taker. He is sometimes expensive, but he gets paid with the key scalps he makes.