Update: 13 July, 2019 21:28 PM
England, New Zealand square off to be first-time world champions

England, New Zealand square off to be first-time world champions

It was four summers ago, when a dead-on-the-mat English team bought into Brendon McCullum's brand of cricket to instill some life in their 50-over game, and began a journey by out-McCulluming New Zealand in their home series. The philosophy of play prospered between MCG and Lord's under Eoin Morgan's leadership, and on Sunday against the same team, they await its logical conclusion.

New Zealand, on the other hand, have slowly slipped into a more dour mode under Kane Williamson. Not a scream to hear, not an expression to picture, the New Zealand skipper just jogged his way towards his teammates, shook hands and made a claim for the final berth after having beaten possibly the closest contender to the hosts for the title - India. For all the noise of 'it's coming home' and how it will inject a fresh lease of life into the game in England, Williamson too stands with an equal chance - if not with the odds in his favour - to create his own legacy as a captain, underrated much but possibly to go one-up on his predecessor's achievements

New Zealand weren't the most impressive side through the course, with issues aplenty. In fact, with rules other than NRR, the kind that Pakistan would've liked, they would've probably not even made it to the semis. When they lost, they lost badly, and when they won, in most cases it was simply a scrape through. But when it all bottles down to that one nerve-jangling moment in that one nerve-jangling match, recent history should leave them warmer of the two.

And there's no better place they can fancy themselves to be at against England than Lord's. The noise is there, the cup is being demanded, and yet at the home of homes, England don't have the best of records. More importantly, they have withered in key moments, and even with one piece missing in that perfect jigsaw - like it was seen in Jason Roy's absence - found themselves looking bereft of their powers. Even their much-celebrated lower order has failed to pitch in and make an impact when really needed.

What England have to their favour in a match-up is the contest between their pace attack and New Zealand's under-firing batting line-up. Jofra Archer and Chris Woakes have been deadly with the new ball, backed-up well by Liam Plunkett and Mark Wood in the middle overs. New Zealand's batting, barring the occasional rescue acts by Colin de Grandhomme and James Neesham, has largely been shouldered by Williamson and Ross Taylor. The tournament is one game away from shutting shop, but the openers and Tom Latham are yet to find their footing, which makes England's attack, even in the absence of a left-armer exploiting the Lord's slope, potent.

While this remains the clear disparity going into the final, what could eventually differentiate the two sides could be what tightens the challenge: England's top order against New Zealand's new-ball attack. It was what held them up in their respective semifinal encounters, with both emerging triumphant and paving the way for the July 14 date, but on the day, the better of the two could be what will define their maiden world cup triumph.

Only one can blink in London, only one can smile. The Piranhas will remind them all along, "You'll have to laugh or you'll cry".

Where: England vs New Zealand, Lord's, London

When: July 14, 2019, 10:30 AM (Local Time)

What to expect: Pitch looks to be a good one (for Lord's). Historically, it's quite a low-scoring ground in ODIs and England don't have the finest of records here. The weather should be good, a bit warm.

Team News


With no injury concerns, there seems to be little reason for a change. New Zealand have three left-handers in their top 6, but Moeen Ali's ordinary form doesn't warrant a spot for him in the XI, especially with Mark Wood and Liam Plunkett doing a good job.

Probable XI: Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan (c), Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler (wk), Chris Woakes, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, Jofra Archer, Mark Wood

New Zealand

With England pacers using the cross seamers effectively, the New Zealand batsmen have prepared hard for that in the nets. However, the concern for them is that three of their batsmen have not hit form as yet. Colin Munro is expected to be drafted in, in place of the misfiring Henry Nicholls.

Probable XI: Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Kane Williamson (c), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (wk), James Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Matt Henry, Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson

What they said:

"New Zealand are an extremely tough side, with a lot of experience, a lot of skill. They were not the best side in the group [league] stage and they improved. [They've been] very similar to us, from the group stage to the semifinal performance. So we are striving to improve our performance. No doubt they will."- Eoin Morgan

সম্পাদক : ইমদাদুল হক মিলন,
নির্বাহী সম্পাদক : মোস্তফা কামাল,
ইস্ট ওয়েস্ট মিডিয়া গ্রুপ লিমিটেডের পক্ষে ময়নাল হোসেন চৌধুরী কর্তৃক প্লট-৩৭১/এ, ব্লক-ডি, বসুন্ধরা, বারিধারা থেকে প্রকাশিত এবং প্লট-সি/৫২, ব্লক-কে, বসুন্ধরা, খিলক্ষেত, বাড্ডা, ঢাকা-১২২৯ থেকে মুদ্রিত।
বার্তা ও সম্পাদকীয় বিভাগ : বসুন্ধরা আবাসিক এলাকা, প্লট-৩৭১/এ, ব্লক-ডি, বারিধারা, ঢাকা-১২২৯। পিএবিএক্স : ০২৮৪০২৩৭২-৭৫, ফ্যাক্স : ৮৪০২৩৬৮-৯, বিজ্ঞাপন ফোন : ৮১৫৮০১২, ৮৪০২০৪৮, বিজ্ঞাপন ফ্যাক্স : ৮১৫৮৮৬২, ৮৪০২০৪৭। E-mail : [email protected]