The ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 presents a high-stakes face-off: England versus Australia. With Australia's resurgent form positioning them for the semi-finals and England grappling with a slim chance of advancement, the clash at Ahmedabad's magnificent venue is more than a mere group-stage match. It’s a critical juncture where England could disrupt Australia's ascent, injecting unexpected turmoil into the semi-final mix.
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Match Preview: Australia vs England, ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 36th Match
ICC World Cup • 4 Nov, 2023 • 4,169 Views • ⭐ 5.0
Written by Anand Swami
The prominent Narendra Modi Stadium stands ready to host the high-stakes cricketing duel. Its pitches, known for their batter-friendly nature, usually offer a solid platform for high-scoring affairs. But as is customary, the bowlers, particularly seamers, might extract early benefits from the surface, providing a window of challenge for openers. The venue's history suggests a balance, setting the stage for an engrossing encounter.
Australia Form Guide: WWWLW
Australia's recent form in ODIs is formidable, with a track record of four wins in their last five matches. The streak indicates a strong resurgence after an initial slump at the beginning of the World Cup, marked by losses to South Africa and India. The team, led by Pat Cummins, has shown resilience and adaptability in bouncing back to a commanding position in the tournament. However, the team faces disruptions with Glenn Maxwell's absence due to an injury sustained in a golf incident, and Mitchell Marsh's departure to Perth for family reasons.
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These events present challenges to the batting lineup, although the presence of David Warner and Travis Head, both prolific run-scorers, somewhat mitigates the concern. Their performance in the powerplay will be critical for setting up Australia's games ahead. Looking forward, Australia's path to the semi-finals is not without obstacles. A potentially pivotal clash with Afghanistan looms, and a surging Pakistan team poses a threat to their top-four standing. The outcome of Pakistan's match with New Zealand will also be significant for Australia's position moving forward.
England Form Guide: LLLLW
England's recent ODI outings reflect a period of struggle, with four losses in their last five games. As the reigning World Champions, the team's form has been disappointing, especially in contrast to their more successful red-ball campaign earlier in the summer. Ben Stokes' frank assessment of the team being 'crap' encapsulates England's woes in the World Cup so far. The team's chances of progressing in the tournament are hanging by a thread, with only a fractional mathematical chance of making it to the knockouts. Despite the odds, the stakes remain high for England, as their final standing in the group stage will influence their qualification for the 2025 Champions Trophy.
England's squad faces scrutiny and pressure, not least because of David Willey's imminent retirement from international cricket. The match against Australia presents an opportunity for England to reclaim some of their lost prestige and derail Australia's smoother progression in the tournament. A victory against their arch-rivals could also serve as a bittersweet reminder of England's potential, despite a campaign that has largely gone awry.
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Players to Watch
Joe Root (England)
Joe Root’s form in One Day Internationals (ODIs) has been a topic of concern for England. Once known for his consistent run-scoring and his dilemma of not converting fifties into hundreds, Root’s current form reflects a more pressing issue - his struggle to perform even in the powerplay. In the span of 16 ODIs since the start of 2022, his figures have been alarming for a player of his stature, with eight dismissals in the powerplay accumulating just 33 runs from 72 balls.
This is a significant drop for a player who has been one of England's finest No.3 batsmen. As England faces Australia, Root’s ability to return to form is crucial. His performance could be a deciding factor in England’s pursuit to rejuvenate their campaign, especially when he has implicitly suggested that England's best is yet to come and hinges on their top players performing to their potential.
Adam Zampa (Australia)
Adam Zampa has proven to be a key player in Australia’s bowling lineup, especially after a shaky start in the World Cup against formidable teams like India and South Africa. With a striking performance of 16 wickets in the tournament, including 15 across four consecutive wins, Zampa has demonstrated his growth in confidence and effectiveness as a bowler. This has earned him twice as many wickets as other leading Australian bowlers like Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood.
Additionally, Zampa has a favourable recent record against England, having taken 11 wickets at an average of 11.90 in their last ODI series encounter, which resulted in a 3-0 series victory for Australia. England, once dominant against wrist spin, may find Zampa to be a significant threat, potentially altering the course of their innings if they do not address the challenge he poses.
Facing the prospect of rejuvenation post-World Cup, England contemplates promoting the youthful duo of Harry Brook and Gus Atkinson, the latter cleared to play despite a minor training injury to his finger. Yet, there's a prevailing belief that those responsible for the team's predicament should have the opportunity to redeem themselves. With Reece Topley sidelined, Brydon Carse remains an option, but it's the fiery Mark Wood who may be tasked with delivering blistering pace once again.
Australia, on the other hand, faces its challenges with Glenn Maxwell and Mitchell Marsh's absences thinning the ranks. Captain Pat Cummins has acknowledged the strain on the squad, but remedial measures seem clear with Marcus Stoinis and Cameron Green stepping into the breach and likely promotions for Steven Smith and Marnus Labuschagne in the batting lineup, as Sean Abbott, remains an unused resource.
Pitch and Weather Report
In Ahmedabad, the pitch's behaviour hinges on the type of soil: black soil typically yields a slow and low surface, whereas red soil tends to produce a quicker and bouncier wicket. This game is free from the smog troubles plaguing the Bangladesh-Sri Lanka match in Delhi. The weather is expected to be scorching at 35 degrees Celsius during the day, cooling off under the stadium lights with a chance of dew affecting play, an element England has misconstrued in past games.
England (Probable): Jos Buttler (capt, wk), Joe Root, Dawid Malan, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow, Liam Livingstone, Chris Woakes, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood, David Willey, Moeen Ali / Harry Brook
Australia (Probable): Steven Smith, David Warner, Mitchell Starc, Travis Head, Pat Cummins (capt), Josh Hazlewood, Marcus Stoinis, Cameron Green, Marnus Labuschagne, Adam Zampa, Josh Inglis (wk)
The live broadcast details for the England vs Australia World Cup 2023 match are as follows: In India, Star Sports Network and Disney+ Hotstar will provide coverage, while Sky Sports will telecast the match in England. The viewers in Australia can tune in to Fox Sports to watch the game. The match begins at 2 PM Indian Standard Time (IST), with the toss at 1:30 PM IST. For England, the match starts at 9:30 AM (BST). In Australia, the timings are 4:30 PM (AWST), 6:00 PM (ACST), and 6:30 PM (AEST).
Amid the grandeur of Ahmedabad's stadium, this isn't just a match; it's a narrative steeped in cricketing lore. England, the underdogs with a flicker of hope, face a dominant Australian team. The encounter isn't merely about World Cup points; it’s a test of character, a battle of wills. While Australia aims to secure their semi-final passage, England fights for dignity, seeking to upend the tournament narrative with an upset.
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