New Zealand have made an excellent start to their ICC World Cup 2019 campaign with back to back wins. They are still unbeaten in the tournament with five victories and one washout against India. The Kiwis will take on Pakistan next on June 26 (Wednesday) at Edgbaston to seal a top-four berth. Senior opener Martin Guptill who had a mild tournament so far stands on the verge of equalling countrymen Stephen Fleming’s record in the next game.

Guptill in line to take his name to record book

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Kane Williamson & Co have been terrific so far in this tournament. The New Zealand skipper has led the team from the front with two consecutive centuries against South Africa and West Indies. Ross Taylor has been a supporting act, but an effective one at that, while Colin de Grandhomme has struck vital runs and chipped in with economical overs to complement the pace attack. New ball bowlers Trent Boult and Matt Henry have also done a fine job, but it is Lockie Ferguson who has been a revelation. He has so far picked 14 wickets and will hope to improve his tally against Pakistan where New Zealand look to confirm their semifinal spot.

Martin Guptill, Ben Stokes
Getty Images

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However, the openers Martin Guptill and Colin Munro have not been among the runs which is a sign of worry for the Black Caps going deep into the World Cup. But both of them have the calibre to bounce back, and the management will hope that to happen against Pakistan. Meanwhile, Guptill who is yet to set the stage on fire but finds himself on the cusp of taking his name to the record books. The opener needs just 58 runs to become the second player after legendary Stephen Fleming to score 1000 World runs for New Zealand.

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Furthermore, Martin Guptill needs another 53 runs to complete 1000 ODI runs against Pakistan. He will become the third Kiwi player to scale the feat after Stephen Fleming (1090 runs) and Ross Taylor (1068 runs).

Ankush Das

I am an accountant by qualification, my parents thought their obedient son would study further to become a CA, but I had other things in mind. An ardent Cricket fan is following his passion and making a living watching and working around his favorite sport.