Monday, 9 April 2007

Preview: New Zealand vs Ireland

Two hard working teams come face to face today in what should be another fairly one sided encounter. Unlike Bangladesh, Ireland are still a long way from the big eight and upsets for Ireland are certainly proving to be the exception rather than the norm.

Ireland have been dealt a big blow by the news that a hamstring injury has ruled out Andre Botha, whose bowling especially has been miserly to date. Meanwhile, Kevin O'Brien is certain to return after missing the last match. New Zealand have their own injury concerns with Ross Taylor and Michael Mason ruled out. However, Mark Gillespie is back to fitness and will likely get a start to see if he comprises a part of the best Kiwi bowling attack.

Prediction: New Zealand to show their dearth in class.

Players to watch: Shane Bond is the major difference between the sides, Ireland will need the so far impressive Boyd Rankin.

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