Former Indian pacer Ajit Agarkar said that Afghanistan have a big chance to win against New Zealand.
After losing to India by 66 runs, the Mohammad Nabi-led Afghanistan side will play in a do or die match against the Black Caps in what will be a virtual quarter-final of Group 2.
India win against Scotland gains them a massive net run rate
But both Afghanistan and New Zealand will be wary of India’s sudden increase in net-run rate after the emphatic win against Scotland.
Indian openers Kl Rahul and Rohit Sharma once again displayed fire in their innings as India scored 82 in the Powerplay overs despite losing both the openers.
India chased the low score of 86 within 6.3 overs to get boost up their net run rate to +1.619 and leapfrogged Afghanistan in the points table.
New Zealand’s batting is not looking all that strong: Ajit Agarkar
Agarkar believes that Afghanistan bowlers, boasted by their spin department, can trouble a depleted New Zealand batting order.
“Afghanistan have a chance to beat New Zealand. They have talented players and good bowlers. However, it’s an afternoon game, so the spin bowlers might get some help. Also, New Zealand’s batting is not looking all that strong.
“They have come out of difficult situations to win their last two games. So if Afghanistan bowl well, they can trouble New Zealand,” Agarkar told ESPNCricinfo.
New Zealand were struggling against Namibia as they were 87/4 at the end of the 14th over.
It was fireworks from middle-order batters Glenn Phillips (39*) and James Neesham (35*) that boosted the team’s total to 163/4.
Some sharp bowling by the new-ball pair of Tim Southee (2/15) and Trent Boult (2/20) restricted Namibia to 111/7 as the Black Caps won by 52 runs.
If New Zealand wins against Afghanistan, then they automatically qualify for the knockout stage with irrespective of the result between India and Namibia on November 8.
New Zealand will play Afghanistan on Sunday at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.