Mike Hesson: Boult can get Rohit Sharma out with the swinging ball

Former New Zealand coach Hesson, a panellist on Star Sports Select Dugout, feels the Black Caps' ability to take wickets with the new ball is going to be critical in the World Cup semifinal against India.

Trent Boult appeals for Rohit Sharma's wicket in the World Cup 2019 warm-up fixture against India at the Oval.   -  GETTY IMAGES

 

India will no doubt go in as favourites against New Zealand, but in a knockout game, anything can happen. New Zealand will have to play very well though, certainly better than they have played so far.

From a batting point of view, New Zealand has not been able to put up a solid performance yet. Looking from their point of view, they can take comfort from the fact that they have reached the semifinal despite the batting not firing. If the likes of Martin Guptill, Tom Latham and Ross Taylor can hit their straps, they are capable of producing an upset.

New ball show

The ability of New Zealand to take wickets with the new ball is going to be critical. Trent Boult plays a massive part in that. I believe that Boult can get Rohit Sharma out with the swinging ball. If the pitch offers swing — which has been the case at Old Trafford in previous matches — then it becomes more of an even contest between the two teams. However, if Rohit can get through the Powerplay, then he’ll be well set and ready to cash in.

As for the team combination, I think Ravindra Jadeja is good enough to bat at No. 7. He should be one of two spinners in the eleven. At Old Trafford, both sides need to field six bowlers. Going in with five bowlers and no back up is a bit risky.

The Virat challenge

In every match that Virat Kohli plays, it looks like he has the chance to get a big hundred. The fact that the openers have made quite a few 100-run partnerships in this World Cup has made it difficult for Virat to make big scores. The challenge for New Zealand is that if you get Rohit early, you give Virat a chance to get a big one.

Virat is primed and ready to go.

(Tune in to Select Dugout on Star Sports Select 1 on India matchdays and Sundays)