New Zealand is all set to play former champions Pakistan in a crucial ODI World Cup 2023 encounter in Bengaluru on Saturday, November 4. There is every possibility of rainy season disrupting this virtual quarter-final match. If the game is abandoned due to there being no reserve day, Pakistan’s hopes of qualifying for the semi-finals will be a huge blow.
Pakistan’s four-match losing streak ended in their last game as they defeated Bangladesh by seven wickets. After playing seven matches, the ‘Men in Green’ have three wins and four losses. They will now turn their attention to New Zealand’s plight as the Blackcaps have slumped to three consecutive defeats after starting their World Cup campaign with four straight wins.
After Pakistan’s victory, Kane Williamson’s team will have equal points as New Zealand after playing equal number of matches. Pakistan’s net run rate is -0.024, while New Zealand’s is +0.484. Net Run Rate (NRR) can be an important metric to keep an eye on.
However, if it rains in the middle of the match, Pakistan and New Zealand will get one point each. In such a situation, the Babar Azam-led team will be able to score a maximum of nine points if they win against England. Then, the former champions will have to hope for an upset by at least two teams from Australia, New Zealand and Afghanistan.
Kane Williamson returns to New Zealand’s playing eleven
The great Kane Williamson has also recovered from the thumb injury sustained in the ongoing ODI World Cup 2023 and is set to play only his second match in the prestigious competition. When he came out for the toss, the Chinnaswamy crowd welcomed him with a huge roar.
Williamson played the match against Bangladesh in Chennai on 13 October. He scored a brilliant half-century before suffering a thumb injury. Later it was found that the player’s thumb was fractured. After missing four matches, Williamson is finally back and will look to inspire his players and end the disappointing losing streak before the business end of the tournament.