New Zealand vs Pakistan Semifinal Preview: While New Zealand dominated their ICC T20 World Cup group and entered the semis comfortably, Pakistan managed to mount an incredible comeback after losing their first two matches in the Super 12 stage. Now both prepare to face off at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) in a mouth-watering semi-final contest.
The group stage matches are over and we are now in the final act of the ICC T20 World Cup 2022. While the Kiwis dominated their group and entered the semis comfortably, Pakistan managed to mount an incredible comeback after losing their first two matches in the Super 12 stage. Now both prepare to face off at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) in a mouth-watering contest on Wednesday, November 9.
T20 World Cup 2022 Pakistan’s Journey
Babar Azam’s team suffered painful last-ball defeats to India and Zimbabwe right at the start of their Super 12 campaign. However, they bounced back with wins against Netherlands, South Africa, and Bangladesh to keep their hopes of lifting a second T20 World Cup trophy alive.
Pakistan needed some help though and it came in the form of the Netherlands who pulled off a stunning upset against South Africa in the final round of Super 12 matches. The Proteas’ defeat opened the door for Pakistan who had to face off against Bangladesh in a straight shootout for the final semifinal spot.
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T20 World Cup 2022 New Zealand’s Journey
New Zealand on the other hand has been dominant in the Super 12 stage, losing just once in the tournament so far. They began their campaign with a dominant 89-run victory over hosts Australia and their only defeat of the campaign was a 20-run loss to England.
The Kiwis brushed off that defeat with a 35-run victory over Ireland in their final Super 12 game where captain Kane Williamson led from the front. Williamson scored 61 off just 35 balls to help his team post 185/6.
Form and Composition
Pakistan will be boosted by the return to form of Afridi as well as both openers Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan playing decent knocks in their win against Bangladesh. The top order has been a spot of worry for the Men in Green but with Babar and Rizwan firing they’re a completely different prospect to handle.
The Kiwis meanwhile have looked like a solid unit with their bowling unit particularly impressive so far. They bowled out Australia and Sri Lanka for 111 and 102 respectively with England the only team to go past the 150-run mark against them.
The power-hitting duo of Finn Allen and Glenn Phillips have also contributed immensely to the team’s balance with captain Williamson able to take his time as he goes through the gears.
The two sides last faced off in October in the finals of a T20I tri-series tournament in New Zealand where Pakistan beat the Kiwis courtesy of a player of the match performance from Mohammad Nawaz who took 1/33 and chipped in with an unbeaten 38 off 22 balls in his side’s 5-wicket victory.
This time around though the stakes are much highest as they meet at the biggest stage of all with a spot in the World Cup finals up for grabs.
Last 5 Games:
New Zealand: NR-W-W-L-W
Head to Head:
Matches played: 28
New Zealand wins: 11
Pakistan wins: 17
SCG Pitch Report and Weather Conditions
New Zealand posted 200/3 in their tournament opener against Australia at the very same venue. The track at the SCG is a batting paradise and Pakistan also has experience playing here, scoring 185/9 en route to their victory against South Africa. The weather forecast has predicted clear skies so we should be in for an entertaining game of cricket.
Probable Playing XIs:
New Zealand Possible XI: Finn Allen, Devon Conway (WK), Kane Williamson (C), Glenn Phillips, James Neesham, Daryl Mitchell, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Lockie Ferguson, and Trent Boult.
Pakistan Possible XI: Mohammad Rizwan (WK), Babar Azam (C), Mohammad Haris, Shan Masood, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Nawaz, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Wasim Jr, Naseem Shah, Haris Rauf, and Shaheen Afridi.
Where to watch:
The match starts at 1.30 PM IST.
In India, the match will be broadcast on the Star Sports Network.
Online viewers can follow the live-action via Disney+Hotstar.