Bangladesh vs New Zealand at Seddon Park, Hamilton, 13th March - Match Preview
Both these teams have qualified for the all important Quarter Finals slated for next week. New Zealand have been relentless in their attack through their captain Brendon McCullum in all the three departments. They easily defeated Sri Lanka before blowing away England through Tim Southee's 7-33 and then beat the Australians in a nail biter. Scotland did give them a scare but that could be brushed aside as a minor blip.
Bangladesh have progressed as a result of their win against a woeful England side. They also got a point against the Australians since that game was washed out. They did lose to Sri Lanka as Dilshan and Sangakkara (his first of the four consecutive tons) piled on the runs against them.
New Zealand are sure to finish at the top of Pool A and thus will face either West Indies or Ireland in the Quarters. But they will want to win this and go ahead with a confidence boosting win. With McCullum firing at the top of the order and Williamson and Anderson doing the job in the middle overs they have not been tested so far. But Ross Taylor, Elliot and Ronchi are short of any serious time spent out in the middle.
Tim Southee and Trent Boult have fired on all cylinders and lead the Kiwi bowling attack. Dan Vettori is also in mesmerizing form in the World Cup so far.
Bangladesh batting has seen different people come to the party at different occasions. Tamim made runs against Scotland while Shakib, Mahmudullah and Mushfiqur have all been contributing to their cause. They will be pretty confident after their last game but facing the Kiwi bowling presents a much tougher challenge.
Bangladesh Players celebrate their historic win over England
which paved their way to the Quarter Finals
Mashrafe Mortaza and Rubel Hossain have been brilliant so far delivering key wickets but Mashrafe might not play as a precautionary measure after he was seen clutching to his knees several times during the last two games. Shakib has been economical but Bangladesh would want him to pick up wickets as well.
Key Battles: Bangladesh vs New Zealand
Tim Southee and Trent Boult vs Tamim Iqbal and Mahmudullah Riyad
Daniel Vettori vs Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim
Brendon McCullum vs Rubel Hossain
If Bangladesh win this one, then will move up to number 3 position in the Pool A displacing the more fancied Sri Lankans. They will also avoid facing India in the Quarters and will then face South Africa who have looked vulnerable at times. But more importantly, they will get such a huge boost defeating New Zealand that they will then dream big in the Quarter Finals too!!