World Cup 2019: Semifinal 1, India vs New Zealand - Why Virat Kohli and Co. will win the match
New Zealand were lucky to get some easy fixtures at the start of the tournament as they collected 11 points in the first six matches of the campaign. Since then, they lost three matches in a row against Pakistan, Australia, and England to lose confidence and momentum before the semifinals.
Everyone expected India to finish second and face England in the 2nd semifinal on 11th July. However, the Men in Blue got a favour from South Africa as the Proteas beat Australia in the last league match to help India finish on the top of the standings.
Recently, Virat Kohli's men have enjoyed an upper hand over New Zealand. India and New Zealand have faced each other eight times in the last two years, and the Indian team has won on six occasions. New Zealand beat India convincingly in the warm-up game but Virat Kohli's men look in much better shape than they did during the warm-up match.
The form guide and standings suggest that the Indian team will be the favourites in the semifinal against New Zealand. The Kiwis are also blessed with a lot of match winners such as Trent Boult and Kane Williamson but the Indian team seems to be too strong on paper.
The Indian top-order is in brilliant form in this tournament, with Rohit Sharma leading the way with a record five centuries in the tournament. KL Rahul also returned to form by scoring a century against Sri Lanka, while Virat Kohli has also consistently scored runs in the tournament.
India is blessed with arguably the best bowling line up in the tournament. While Jasprit Bumrah is not topping the wicket-takers charts, his impact on the tournament can't be denied. The form of Hardik Pandya with the ball has added another dimension to the bowling attack to make it look even better.
Virat Kohli led India U-19 against the New Zealand U-19 team led by Kane Williamson in the 2008 U-19 World Cup. India won the match on that occasion by three wickets, and Indian fans would be hoping for a similar result in this tournament as well.
Also see – India vs New Zealand head to head stats