ENGLAND VS. NEW ZEALAND: NZ’S TOUR OF ENG 2021, 2nd TEST | MATCH PREDICTION AND FANTASY CRICKET TIPS
Hosts England take on New Zealand in the second Test of the 2-match series at Edgbaston in Birmingham, starting from Thursday.
An inexperienced England batting line-up struggled against New Zealand’s pace bowling attack. Courtesy of opener Rory Burns’ big innings under pressure in the first innings, they managed to draw the match despite being behind in the game for all 5 days. The most impressive performer for England was debutant Ollie Robinson, who took 7 wickets in total. However, he will miss out on the second Test after being recently suspended for his racist and sexist tweets from nine years ago. Either pacer Craig Overton or spinner Jack Leach will replace him in the playing XI.
On the other hand, New Zealand will have been very happy with their performance in the first Test, considering it was their first match of red-ball cricket since early January. They seized the initiative early on, with opener Devon Conway scoring an incredible double century on debut, to put England under pressure for the rest of the Test match. Veteran Tim Southee shone with the ball, taking 6 wickets in England’s first innings. However, he may be given a rest for the second Test. Trent Boult, Matt Henry and spinner Ajaz Patel will all be hoping for an opportunity in the second Test. Williamson is injured and will be replaced by Will Young in the playing XI.
As evident from the previous Test, New Zealand have a very well-settled batting and bowling unit and will enter this match as favorites. If England’s batting order can click, they certainly have the bowling resources to trouble the visitors in this second Test. So expect a highly entertaining game of Test cricket between these two sides at Edgbaston.
- Match: England vs. New Zealand, 2nd Test
- Venue: Edgbaston, Birmingham
- Date & Time: June 10, 2021, at 3:30 PM IST/11 AM Local
Probable Playing XI
Dominic Sibley, Rory Burns, Zak Crawley, Joe Root (C), Ollie Pope, Dan Lawrence, James Bracey (WK), Stuart Broad, James Anderson, O Stone, Mark Wood
Tom Latham (C), Devon Conway, Will Young, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling (WK), Colin de Grandhomme, Neil Wagner, Matt Henry, Trent Boult, Ajaz Patel
Weather and Pitch Report
Birmingham is expected to have sunny and clear conditions on all days of the match. The temperature will be around 24 degrees during the game.
Edgbaston has been a well-balanced wicket in the past and will have something in it for both batters and bowlers. Batters need to be patient to score on this surface. Pacers will dominate the game with the new ball, while spinners might be handy in the last two days. The average first-innings score at this venue in the last five matches has been 304 runs.
The team batting first has a good record here at this venue. Given the good weather, the captain winning the toss is likely to opt to bat first. Any total above 300 runs in the first innings will be a good total on this track as the batting may become tough here on the fourth and fifth day.
Top Fantasy Picks
- Dominic Sibley made a well-compiled 60* in the second innings to draw the game for England. This was his first half century in nine Test innings after a string of low scores. With the batting unit struggling against the opposition’s quality seam attack, he will look to give his team a steady platform.
- Joe Root remains England’s most important batter in this series. He struggled a bit in the Indian conditions but scored a couple of 40s in the familiar conditions last week. He has scored 481 runs in the five Tests he played here with an average of 60.12, including 1 century and 4 half centuries.
- James Anderson was pretty average in the first Test, picking up just 2 wickets in the whole match. He has 616 Test wickets to his name and is still one of the best fast bowlers in the world. He has taken 44 wickets in his 11 matches here, with best figures of 6 for 47.
- Tom Latham has been consistent at the top of the order for New Zealand and has the potential to play a long innings. He has an average of 41.97 after 57 tests with 11 centuries to his name. He made 23 and 36 in the previous Test and will be a key player here.
- Ross Taylor is one of the most experienced Test players in the Kiwi squad. He had a below-par performance in the first test, making just 47 runs in the two innings. His last Test century was against England in 2019. Since then, he has made only 2 half-centuries in 10 Tests.
- Trent Boult’s strength is swing with pace, and he will be a key bowler for his side in these English conditions. His left-arm deliveries will be a major threat to the hosts’ batters. In 71 Tests, he has taken 281 wickets, and will be looking to add more wickets to his tally here.
Howzat Dream Team
- Wicketkeeper: BJ Watling
- Batsmen: J Root, D Sibley, O Pope, R Taylor, T Latham
- All-rounder: C de Grandhomme
- Bowlers: J Anderson, M Wood, T Boult, N Wagner
- Captain: T Latham/T Boult
- Vice Captain: J Root/J Anderson
NOTE: The Howzat dream team above is just a suggestion. You can make your match prediction and play fantasy cricket matches. Also, don’t forget to make any necessary changes to your team once the actual playing 11 is announced by each team (30 minutes before the start of the match) as some players you have selected might not be part of the team suggested.
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