T20 WC final, NZ vs Australia: Preview, stats, and more
New Zealand and Australia will lock horns in the grand finale of the 2021 ICC T20 World Cup on Sunday. The Dubai International Cricket Stadium will host the high-voltage encounter. New Zealand edged past England in a nail-biting semi-final, while Australia replicated the show against Pakistan a day later. Notably, the summit clash will be a repeat of the 2015 ICC World Cup final.
Why does this story matter?
This is the first time New Zealand have qualified for the T20 World Cup final. They earlier finished as the semi-finalists in 2007 and 2016. The Black Caps can win their second ICC trophy this year, having won the World Test Championship. Meanwhile, Australia were the runners-up of the 2010 T20 WC. They humbled New Zealand in the final of 2015 50-over World Cup.
Here is the head-to-head record
The two sides have met 14 times in T20I cricket, with Australia leading the head-to-head series 9-5 (includes NZ's Super Over win). Earlier this year, New Zealand beat Australia 3-2 in the five-match T20I series at home. As far as the T20 World Cup is concerned, the two sides have clashed only once. The Black Caps won in the 2016 edition by eight runs.
Key details about the match
The final will be held at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. It will begin at 7:30 PM IST. Both New Zealand and Australia won their last games on this venue. The wicket here assists the batters, while the bowlers also receive help. One can watch the match live on the Star Sports Network and stream the same on Disney+ Hotstar.
Here are the top performers
Aaron Finch is Australia's leading run-scorer in T20Is against New Zealand. He has amassed 251 runs from seven games at a strike rate of 144.25 against them. In the bowling segment, Ashton Agar has taken 13 wickets with the best bowling performance of 6/30. Meanwhile, Martin Guptill owns 435 runs against Australia at an average of 36.25. He also has a ton against them.
Australia boast a settled combination
Matthew Wade did a Michael Hussey in Australia's semi-final win against Pakistan. He helped the Aussies snatch victory from the jaws of defeat, with a 17-ball 41*. Australia would want to seal the deal one last time. Probable XI: David Warner, Aaron Finch (captain), Mitchell Marsh, Steven Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade (wicket-keeper), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood.
Devon Conway ruled out of final
In a major blow to New Zealand, Devon Conway has been ruled out of the final. As per reports, he broke his hand during the semi-final against England. Tim Seifert is expected to replace him in the final. Probable XI: Martin Guptill, Daryl Mitchell, Kane Williamson (captain), Tim Seifert (wicket-keeper), Glenn Phillips, James Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Adam Milne, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Trent Boult.