Cricket

Report #AusvAfg & #SlvNz

Bowlers set up fitting win for the Kiwis.

New Zealand has historically punched above their weight in the World Cup tournaments and the Black Caps will look to get off to a flying start in this campaign when they face off against Sri Lanka in their opening game. Will The Lions be able to pull off an upset or will Kane Williamson and his men be able to dominate in Cardiff?

New Zealand opted to bowl first after winning the toss, in the seaming conditions of Cardiff, as Matt Henry provided a breakthrough in the first over when he had Thirimanne trapped in front for 4. Perera and built the innings for Srilanka by playing aggressive shots, as Henry once again did the damage when he dismissed Perera and Mendis off the consecutive balls to leave Srilanka reeling at 46/3 in 9th over. Ferguson did more damage to the Srilankan side, when he trapped de Silva in front for 4, with Srilanka at 53/4 in 12th over. Mathews joined Karunaratne for the 5th wicket stand, but he couldn’t get going too, as Grandhomme got the better of him for a duck, Ferguson dismissed Mendis for 1, as Srilanka found themselves in all sorts of trouble at 60/6. Perera struck few lusty blows in his knock of 27, as the 52 runs stand was ended by Santner when he got rid of Perera. Neesham got Udana for a duck, as the scoreboard showed Srilanka’s misery of 114/8 in 25th over. Lakmal made 7, while Malinga was dismissed for 1 only, as Srilanka’s innings was wrapped up at 136 in 30th over. Karunaratne remained unbeaten on 52. Ferguson picked up 22/3.

Chasing the easiest target of 137, Guptill and Munro provided a solid opening stand for Kiwis. Guptill raced to his half century off 36 balls, while Munro took 41 balls for his half century, as the pair took Kiwis over the line with ease in the 17th over. Guptill remained unbeaten on 71, while Munro remained not out on 58, as New Zealand registered a 10 wicket victory over Srilanka.

Afghanistan vs Australia:

Afghanistan have already shown what they are capable of on the English shores when they defeated Pakistan in their first warm-up match. However, in their opening game of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, they will be up against the defending champions Australia. The men from Down Under have built up a head of steam in the past few months with the likes of David Warner, Steven Smith and Aaron Finch back to their best. Can Afghanistan upset the apple cart in their opening game, or will the Aussies mark a statement of their intent as they begin their title defence?

Afghanistan won the toss and elected to bat, with Starc and Cummins provided the early breakthrough by knocking over Shehzad and Zazai for duck. Rahmat Shah made 43, while Hashmat scored 18, Nabi was runout for 18, while Afghanistan struggled at 77/5. Najib and Gulbadin made a good contribution for 6th wicket stand. Najib made 51, while Gulbadin made 51. Late surge from Rashid and Mujeeb took Afghanistan to 207 all out in 39th over. Cummins picked up 40/3

Chasing a small total of 208, Finch and Warner got going for Australia and the pair put up 96 on the board in 17 overs, Finch was undone by Gulbadin for 66. Khawaja came to bat at 3, as he made a solid 15, before being trapped infront by Rashid. Smith made 18, while Warner’s terrific 89 took Australia over the line in 35th over to win the game by 7 wickets. Rashid picked up 52/1

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