Five intriguing head-to-head battles to look forward to during Sunday’s World Cup final between England and New Zealand at Lord’s in London.
Jason Roy vs Mitchell Santner
- New Zealand opened the bowling with spinner Santner during last week’s round-robin clash with England at Chester-le-Street. The tactic slowed Roy’s aggression to an extent, and might be worth repeating this time.
Kane Williamson vs Mark Wood
- Williamson is among this World Cup’s top five leading run-scorers and was relatively settled against Wood before being run out in Durham. Opportunity, then, knocks to effectively continue and complete what was started 10 days ago.
Adil Rashid vs Ross Taylor
- Leg-spinner Rashid is vital to England’s plans for the so-called middle overs, when variation after the seamers’ initial spells and before the closing overs is required. Taylor’s approach will likely result in the slow bowler being attacked for boundaries rather than milked for singles.
Ben Stokes vs Jimmy Neesham
- An intriguing contrast between England and New Zealand’s foremost all-rounders awaits. Their roles with the ball will be particularly important, as Neesham showcases the importance of taking the pace off, while Stokes exploits heavier bounce.
Lockie Ferguson vs Jonny Bairstow
- The veteran was chosen ahead of Ferguson when England and New Zealand met earlier in the tournament. Bairstow struck a superb century in that match, but will face a strong challenge against the outright pace of Ferguson.
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