Former England captain Nasser Hussain has touted Team India as overwhelming favorites against New Zealand for the 2023 World Cup semi-final on Wednesday (November 15) at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. However, he warned that the Kiwis will be the last team to bow down to the hosts.
The two sides will cross paths in the second-last hurdle of the showpiece event on Wednesday. The Men in Blue had got the better of the Black Caps in the group stage of the tournament and will back themselves to pull off another victory after winning nine consecutive matches.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Hussain highlighted that he is looking forward the most to watching Rachin Ravindra and Virat Kohli bat.
“Two fabulous teams; India obviously favourites, but if there is one side that really won’t bow down to India, it will be New Zealand. They have some fabulously tough cricketers; they have a youngster in Rachin Ravindra. I am really looking forward to tomorrow. This place, round about evening when the light starts taking effect, with Kohli coming out to bat, would be absolutely electric.”
Rachin Ravindra is arguably the breakout star of the 2023 World Cup, mustering 565 runs in nine innings, including three centuries. The left-hander made an impressive 75 in the group-stage fixture against India in Dharamsala.
New Zealand stunned India in the 2019 World Cup semi-final
The Black Caps notably halted India’s run in the 2019 World Cup semi-final at Old Trafford in Manchester. Defending a modest total of 239, new-ball bowlers Matt Henry and Trent Boult ripped apart India’s famed batting line-up, reducing them to 5-3 after just 3.1 overs.
Ravindra Jadeja and MS Dhoni made half-centuries, but the Men in Blue lost the encounter by 18 runs and crashed out of the tournament. However, Team India’s recent form should give them confidence to overcome the Kiwis this time around.