Team India will take on New Zealand in their second match of the Super 12 stage of the ongoing T20 World Cup at the Dubai International Stadium on Sunday. Both teams lost their opening game of the tournament to Pakistan, who sit at the top of Group 2 with three wins from three matches. The Virat Kohli-led Indian team will hope to bounce back from the defeat with a win over the Kane Williamson-led New Zealand. This is game could have far-reaching consequences for both teams’ chances of qualifying for the semis.
Here are five key player battles that might decide the outcome of the game:
1. Rohit Sharma vs Trent Boult
Rohit Sharma will aim to change around his fortunes, having been dismissed cheaply against Pakistan. It’s not a secret that India’s star batter has had his fair share of struggles against left-arm pacers. Trent Boult, his Mumbai Indians teammates, will try his best to exploit Rohit’s weakness with his trademark in-swingers on Sunday.
2. KL Rahul vs Tim Southee
Just like Rohit, KL Rahul also failed to impress against Pakistan in the first game. Rahul, who enjoyed a rich run of form coming into the tournament, will also hope to play an important knock for his team against a challenging bowling line-up. Tim Southee will hope to make the most of his experience by bowling a fiery spell against India.
3. Virat Kohli vs Ish Sodhi
Virat Kohli scored a gutsy half-century against Pakistan, guiding India to a respectable total of 151/7. He will hope to conjure something similar against the disciplined Kiwi bowlers, especially Ish Sodhi, who could exploit his weakness.
4. Martin Guptill vs Mohammed Shami
Martin Guptill had a poor outing Pakistan and will hope to get a big score against India. Mohammed Shami, on the other hand, would love to silence his doubters with a match-winning spell against the Blackcaps.
5. Kane Williamson vs Jasprit Bumrah
Kane Williamson and Jasprit Bumrah have had some interesting battles in the past, and both players will hope to bring out the best out of each other in Dubai on Sunday. Bumrah, especially, had a quiet outing against Pakistan and he will hope make life difficult for the Kiwi batters.
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