ODI World Cup 2023 England vs New Zealand: The 2019 World Cup final’s echoes reverberated as the 2023 World Cup kicked off. While it wasn’t the direct revenge match fans might have anticipated, New Zealand’s nine-wicket win over England in the tournament opener in Ahmedabad brought ample satisfaction to the defending champions. In what could be one of the most emphatic victories of the tournament, England faced a comprehensive beating, rekindling memories of their heartbreaking defeat in the last World Cup final.
A Record-Breaking Chase and Stellar Batting Duo
ENG vs NZ Match Highlights: Chasing a target of 283, New Zealand’s relentless pursuit culminated in a remarkable victory with a whopping 82 balls to spare. The foundation for this monumental win was laid by the dynamic duo of Devon Conway and Rachin Ravindra. Conway’s explosive 152 and Ravindra’s brilliant 123 not out powered the Blackcaps to the fastest chase of a 250-plus target in World Cup history. Conway’s century, which came in just 83 balls, broke Martin Guptill’s previous record for the fastest 50-overs World Cup century by a New Zealander.
Ravindra, on the other hand, became the country’s youngest centurion in a global tournament at the age of 23. Together, these Wellington teammates established the highest partnership in the history of the Blackcaps’ World Cup appearances, a staggering 273-run stand.
A Worrying Start and Kiwi Dominance
New Zealand’s dominance began right from the second over when Sam Curran dismissed Will Young for a first-ball duck. From that moment on, the game’s outcome was rarely in doubt. New Zealand cruised to victory, even outscoring England 38 boundaries to 27.
England, after being put into bat by New Zealand captain Tom Latham, initially appeared to post a competitive total, finishing at 282 for 9. Joe Root’s impressive 77 anchored their innings. However, it was a stuttering effort, largely due to Matt Henry’s brilliant spell of 3 for 48 and Mitchell Santner’s economical bowling, conceding no boundaries in his 10 overs.
Conway and Ravindra Shine Bright
Devon Conway’s exceptional form in ODIs was on full display, marking his fourth century in the format this year. Rachin Ravindra, relatively new to international cricket, notched his first ODI century, providing invaluable support. Ravindra’s presence in the lineup was not only to bolster the batting but also to give Kane Williamson more time to recover from an ACL injury he sustained during the IPL.
A Pivotal Moment in the Match
The chase was ignited when Conway opened with a boundary off the first ball. However, England’s Sam Curran initially posed a challenge. But by the 35th over, Curran was merely a pawn in Conway’s onslaught, as he was taken to task with a flurry of boundaries.
England’s Efforts with the Bat
England had multiple batsmen contributing with double figures, but they failed to build substantial partnerships. Root’s partnership with Jos Buttler was the most significant, adding 70 runs, but it eventually ended with Buttler’s dismissal.
Matt Henry’s early breakthrough and the controlled bowling of Mitchell Santner stifled England’s progress. Santner’s boundary-less 10-over spell was a crucial factor, allowing Ravindra to complete his full quota of overs.
Glenn Phillips, often known for his work in the outfield, played a vital role by picking up two wickets. He helped New Zealand maintain pressure and control during England’s innings.
A Margin of Defeat that Stings
Despite England’s late efforts to post a respectable total, New Zealand’s powerful batting display and superb bowling performance rendered England more than 100 runs short of a competitive score. This defeat leaves England’s pride and net run rate wounded, serving as a stark reminder of the dark ages in their cricketing history.
In conclusion, the opening match of the 2023 World Cup witnessed New Zealand’s emphatic victory, asserting their dominance over England and leaving fans eagerly anticipating the rest of the tournament.