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Former Indian cricketer Aakash Chopra has claimed that the New Zealand team may not be good enough to be termed as favorites going into the 2021 T20 World Cup. The ICC tournament is just two months away with the Black Caps having already announced its squad for the mega-event.
New Zealand is grouped with three Asian teams – India, Pakistan, Afghanistan – and two more qualifiers. These teams are much more suited to the UAE conditions, especially with the arsenal of spinners they have. The Kiwis on the other hand are strangers to slow and low pitches.
Speaking about their chances for the World Cup, Chopra feels even minnows, Afghanistan, can go toe-to-toe with the Kiwis.
“Overall, this team is alright. They are in India’s pool, where Pakistan and Afghanistan are also there. Even Afghanistan can give this team competition and trouble them, honestly speaking.”
“They are a good team. They punch above their weight and they have the ability to become a fist. They won the World Test Championship and lost the 2019 World Cup just because the match got tied,” Chopra stated.
“They have the match-winners but will they win?” – Aakash Chopra
The previous T20 World Cup held in India back in 2016 saw New Zealand go through till the semifinals, where they were beaten comprehensively by England. This time around, however, they may fail to make it out of the group with India and Pakistan there, as per Chopra.
“I have a doubt this time that New Zealand will end up at the podium. Of course, they do surprise everyone but these are the UAE conditions. I see Pakistan and India’s chances extremely bright in this group.”
“I think they might just struggle, even though like Australia, this team also looks fairly balanced and power-packed. They have the match-winners but will they win? We will do a slightly more deep-dive analysis before the World Cup,” he concluded.
New Zealand will start their 2021 T20 World Cup campaign against Pakistan on October 26, followed by the big match against India on October 31.
The post “Overall, This Team Is Alright” – Aakash Chopra Unimpressed With New Zealand Squad For T20 World Cup appeared first on CricketAddictor.