Rain looms large over India-NZ game

Omkar Paranjape
Thursday, 13 June 2019

Nottingham: Rains threaten to steal the limelight as it continued to drizzle at the Trent Bridge on Wednesday, on the eve of India’s World Cup clash against table-topping New Zealand. 

The weather forecast for Thursday does not look promising either, with reports claiming there’s a 70 percent chance of rain across the Northern English city.

Amid concerns of weather, the Indian team’s worry is over the absence of an injured Shikhar Dhawan. It will be interesting to see who Virat Kohli and the team management pick to replace the left-handed opener.

Nottingham: Rains threaten to steal the limelight as it continued to drizzle at the Trent Bridge on Wednesday, on the eve of India’s World Cup clash against table-topping New Zealand. 

The weather forecast for Thursday does not look promising either, with reports claiming there’s a 70 percent chance of rain across the Northern English city.

Amid concerns of weather, the Indian team’s worry is over the absence of an injured Shikhar Dhawan. It will be interesting to see who Virat Kohli and the team management pick to replace the left-handed opener.

The contest, which could be a curtailed one due to inclement weather, will have a quality Black Caps seam attack ready to make life difficult for a new opening pair that is likely to feature KL Rahul at the top alongside Rohit Sharma.

India and New Zealand are the only unbeaten sides of World Cup 2019, with New Zealand at the top of the table with 3 wins from 3 games while India have beaten South Africa and Australia. 

The Indian team chose to train sparingly amidst overcast conditions at Trent Bridge. Vijay Shankar touted to take No 4 spot in the batting line-up, batted for around half an hour with some throwdowns from assistant coach Sanjay Bangar.

India could consider playing Vijay Shankar at No 4, with KL Rahul slated to open the innings with Rohit Sharma.

Jasprit Bumrah has been giving his best results in the World Cup so far, providing timely breakthroughs. With his subtle variations and the ability to extract movement and bounce, Bumrah will be a tough challenge for New Zealand batsmen on Thursday.

Much will depend on the toss too; whoever wins is likely to field first given all the factors.

Ferguson, Henry key
New Zealand are currently leading the points table with three wins from as many games. With Lockie Ferguson and Matt Henry leading the bowling charts with 15 wickets between them in the tournament so far, and with Jimmy Neesham and Colin de Grandhomme providing able support, Kane Williamson has enough bowling options as he’ll be up against a strong Indian batting line-up.

Their middle order is in decent form and the onus is going to be on skipper Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor. Williamson had scored a fine knock of 79 runs in the previous match against Afghanistan and he is going to hold the key. Furthermore, medium pacer James Neesham had delivered the goods with the ball.

No reserve days
The World Cup does not have reserve days, which adds to the growing sense of frustration from cricket fans around the world. For the many who live in England, and those who have travelled here, the forecast of rain across the country is a real dampener.

Two Indian cricket fans who have travelled to England from Canada, stood under umbrellas at Nottingham’s Country Ground watching the drizzle on Wednesday morning. They are of course frustrated and expected rain to be a factor when they booked tickets six months ago.

Tickets are not cheap, and when UK residents have to take off from work early or figure out babysitting options, a washed out match makes for a major disappointment.

Weather and pitch
Nottingham is set for a pretty cold and overcast day with 100 percent cloud cover during the afternoon. The match is set to start in overcast conditions with the rain sure to make an impact as the game progresses. It might be difficult to get a full game as a substantial amount of rain is expected to fall during the afternoon.

Trent Bridge is easily one of the best batting wickets in the country but the overcast conditions can assist the seamers. With rain certain to play a part in the game, the pitch might not yield as many runs as it usually does.

Related News