T20 World Cup final preview and prediction: New Zealand v Australia

A new name will be etched onto the T20 World Cup trophy come Sunday evening as New Zealand and Australia – both searching for their maiden title – meet in the 2021 final.

New Zealand and Australia both appeared in dire straits during their semi-finals, against England and Pakistan respectively, before storming back with the bat and advancing to Sunday’s showpiece event in Dubai.

The Black Caps appeared to have one foot on the plane home needing 57 to win from the final four overs against England, champions in 50-over cricket and the top-ranked T20 team in the world.

But some sublime hitting from Daryl Mitchell and Jimmy Neesham turned the match around and saw New Zealand reach another major final at the expense of Eoin Morgan’s England.

Australia also seemed to be heading to a semi-final defeat as they slipped to 97-5 in their chase of 176, but Marcus Stoinis and Matthew Wade had other ideas and smashed 81 from 40 balls in a brilliant sixth-wicket partnership to stun Babar Azam’s Pakistan.

Australia and New Zealand’s semi-final heroics will mean little if they fall short in the T20 World Cup final, however, and Metro.co.uk is on hand to preview one of the biggest matches in cricket.

T20 Cricket World Cup final

Sunday, 14 November, 2pm, Dubai
New Zealand v Australia

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Odds, courtesy of Betfair:

New Zealand: 5/4
Australia: 8/13

Australia

Why they will win it…

While Australia have largely underwhelmed in T20 World Cups, they have serious pedigree in major tournaments as the most successful 50-over team in history.

The five-time World Cup champions believe they belong on the biggest stage and, while previous results may be inconsequential, Australia blew away New Zealand in the 2015 World Cup final. History could be about to repeat itself.

David Warner, one of the greatest T20 batters in history, finding form is a huge plus for Australia. Having struggled for around nine months – and being dropped from his IPL side – Warner scored two fifties in the Super 12 stage and a quick-fire 49 in the semi-final. He looks back to his best and determined to fire Australia to glory.

Australia’s bowling attack has impressed throughout the tournament, with Test seamers Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins showing their versatility alongside white-ball great Mitchell Starc and in-form Adam Zampa.

Zampa is the leading wicket-taker in the tournament and stifled Pakistan superbly, taking 1-22 in the middle overs. He will expect more success at the same venue on Sunday.

Glenn Maxwell has endured an unusually subdued tournament – scoring 36 runs in six matches, although he has not been required in three of those – but it would not be a surprise to see the talented all-rounder produce some magic in the final.

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