New Zealand will face off against the West Indies in the opening match of the ICC Women’s World Cup 2022 at the Bay Oval, Mount Maunganui on March 4. The hosts are in splendid form coming into this tournament having beaten India 4-1 in the recently-concluded bilateral ODI series at home.
With the home advantage to bank on, the Kiwis seem to be peaking at the right time in all three departments of the game as they eye their second ODI world title. They suffered a four-wicket loss against Pakistan in the first warm-up fixture before going on to beat Australia by nine wickets.
NEW ZEALAND WOMEN PREVIEW
Sophie Devine would go into this contest with her confidence high. They registered a massive win against the Australian Women in the warmup game. Bowling remains the only area of concern for the side and Devine would want her bowlers to strike form in this game and get their first points for the tournament.
Suzie Bates and Sophie Devine shall look to set up a good partnership at the top and they have looked good in the last warmup game. Amelia Kerr has done well after being promoted up the order and he would look to add runs with Maddy Green and Amy Satterthwaite. Georgia Plimmer, Katey Martin, and Hayley Jensen add strength to the side’s batting.
West Indies batters are struggling and the new ball pair of Hannah Rowe and Lea Tahuhu would aim to exploit this weakness. Devine, Rosemary Mair, and Jensen are experienced bowlers and can keep the scoring rate under check in the middle overs. Fran Jonas and Kerr must do well in the supporting role for the side to win.
WEST INDIES WOMEN PREVIEW
If the results of the warmup games are anything to go by, Stafanie Taylor’s side has lots of work to do heading into this game. Their batting isn’t looking at its best right now and the bowlers too have to bowl in the right areas. Their recent record against New Zealand Women has been poor and Taylor would like to turn it around in this game.
The side would need openers Rashada Williams and Deandra Dottin to give the side a good start in this game. Taylor would need to anchor the innings in the middle order with Kycia Knight and Haley Matthews. Shemaine Campbelle and Chedean Nation have good hitting abilities and quick runs would be expected from them down the order.
Their bowlers would have to bowl good lines in the game as New Zealand Women have a very strong batting line-up. Shamilia Connell and Matthews need to get them early breakthroughs. Anisa Mohammed is an experienced campaigner and she needs to play an important role. Afy Fletcher, Taylor, and Shakera Selman shall have to bowl tight lines in this game.
Match :New Zealand vs West Indies ICC Women’s World Cup 2022, Match 1
Venue: Bay Oval, Mount Maunganui
Date & Time: March 4th at 1:00 AM GMT, 2:00 PM LOCAL and 6:30 AM IST
The wicket is expected to suit the batters more than the bowlers and with no dew factor in place, things will only get tougher for the chasing team in the second innings should the target be a stiff one. The average first innings total at the Bay Oval is 256.
In the 14 ODIs that have been played at the venue, teams batting first and chasing have each won seven matches. Nonetheless, the captain winning the toss in the curtain-raiser will be looking forward to bowling first and getting the feel of the fresh pitch on offer.
NEW ZEALAND W VS WEST INDIES W HEAD TO HEAD
Overall games-19, New Zealand W-11, West Indies W-7, NR-1
The conditions at Mount Maunganui on March 4 would be clear and good for batting. The pitch offers early assistance to the fast bowlers but overall the conditions are good for batting. We expect a flat surface for this event. The side that bats first will need 275 runs on the board to feel safe.
Bay Oval, Mount Maunganui is a typical New Zealand venue that offers something for the batters and the bowlers. We have seen fast bowlers do well at this venue with the new ball while batters can play through the line on this surface. Spinners don’t find assistance from the surface and they have to rely on their skills.
TOSS: TO BOWL
The side batting first has won the last four games at this venue. We have seen big scores being put up in recent games played at this venue. Both captains would have this in their mind at the toss and the side winning is expected to opt for batting first.
PROBABLE TOP PERFORMERS
PROBABLE BEST BATTER: AMY SATTERTHWAITE
Amy Satterthwaite has been one of New Zealand’s most consistent and reliable performers with the bat. She scored 166 runs averaging 33.20 in the recently concluded five-match ODI series against India. White Ferns vice-captain has amassed 4464 runs at an average of 38.81 and a strike rate of 75.71 from 138 matches including seven centuries and 26 half-centuries. With a wealth of experience under her belt, the senior batter would be expected to do the bulk of the scoring against the Stafanie Taylor-led side at the Bay Oval.
PROBABLE BEST BOWLER: JESS KERR
Jess Kerr has been one of the greatest finds for New Zealand as far as their bowling department is concerned. The medium-pacer can run through the best batting line-up and provide breakthroughs for her side at regular intervals. She took seven wickets in the India ODIs averaging 13.1 and an economy of 4.34. In 13 ODIs, the oldest of the Kerr sisters has registered 17 scalps with the best bowling figures of 4/35. She would now be expected to make the ball talk in the most important tournament in women’s cricket.
NZW VS WIW
West Indies Women don’t look in the best shape going into this game. Their batting has been poor and the side would need key players to deliver the goods and make a positive start to the tournament. New Zealand Women on the other hand have looked coming into this contest. They know the conditions and this would make them favorites.
New Zealand Women to win.