The news from Napier is that all important second ODI has been delayed due to rain in Napier today. There was a lot of water in the ground, unfortunately the umpires have postponed today’s game. The day of January 28th was such an important day for both teams.
The eyes of millions back home in Pakistan were set on the match result today. The Sri Lanka weather reports predicted some rains this morning in McLean Park. The game was likely to begin within a few hours with the toss. But a much different scene in Napier but the match has been finally abandoned by the Umpires, considering the wicket and ground condition.
The teams have been already announced. Pakistan is led by Azhar Ali, New Zealand captain is Kane Williamson. The thrilling all-rounder Mitchell McClenaghan is out of this game due to being hit by a bouncer by Anwar Ali in the first ODI game on 25th. Doug Bracewell has been added to the Kiwis squad to get a good performance out of him. Let’s look at the Pakistan squad for today:
Azhar Ali (Captain), Ahmed Shehzad, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam, Sohaib Maqsood, Zafar Gohar, Imad Wasim, Anwar Ali, Sarfraz Ahmed (wk), Wahab Riaz, Rahat Ali, Mohammad Irfan, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Amir.
The Kiwi squad was likely to bat and bowl well if the match had been played, not to mention that their ground fielding has been above average for all those years. The squad contains familiar and powerful names like:
Corey Anderson, Trent Boult, Grant Elliott, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Mitchell McClenaghan, Adam Milne, Colin Munro, Henry Nicholls, Mitchell Santner, Kane Williamson (capt), Luke Ronchi (wk), Tom Latham
Any one of them could have been a hero today, too bad that could not happen as the match is not going to start. The umpires have called the game off without a single ball being delivered. With New Zealand still leading the series with 1 Nil.
The Next match on Sunday in Auckland will decide the fate of the series. New Zealand still has the chance to clean sweep the series but Pakistan can come back as fighters to draw the series 1-1. Eden Park is set for all the thrill that was going to take place today. Let’s get ready for a high dose of cricket on Sunday at Auckland.