The Men’s 2023 ODI World Cup is underway in India and runs from October 5 until November 19. Each morning we will round up the latest action and news from the event and bring you the insights from our reporters on the ground.
Top Story: Shami and Kohli put unbeaten India top of the table
India 274 for 6 (Kohli 95, Rohit 46, Jadeja 39*, Ferguson 2-63) beat New Zealand 273 (Mitchell 130, Ravindra 75, Shami 5-54, Kuldeep 2-73) by four wickets
They were without their most irreplaceable player in a top-of-the-table clash against a New Zealand side that’s had the wood over them in recent global-tournament meetings, and this New Zealand side put them under severe pressure on multiple occasions. But in the end, India continued to typify the 2023 World Cup equivalent of Gary Lineker’s famous quote on a superteam from a different sport: “Football is a simple game. Twenty-two men chase a ball for 90 minutes and in the end, the Germans always win.”
Match analysis: Shami shreds safety-first script to present India with another way
Mohammed Shami is pumped after knocking Mitchell Santner over with a yorker•Associated Press
There’s little doubt that Shami is one of India’s main fast bowlers. But so far at the 2023 World Cup, he hadn’t quite been the one. Until Sunday, of course, in Dharamsala, when he left an indelible mark against New Zealand: immaculate control up front bookended by death-overs mastery. Not even a sublime Virat Kohli innings couldn’t quite shade Shami’s second World Cup five-for under the Himalayan mist.
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Afghanistan vs Pakistan, Chennai (2pm IST; 8.30am GMT; 7.30pm AEDT
It’s now roughly halfway through the World Cup, and the table is beginning to take shape. Afghanistan and Pakistan, the two sides that take each other on in Chennai, are nowhere near the head of it, and it’s already beginning to approach must-win territory for each of these sides. Defeat for Afghanistan would almost certainly knock them out, while a Pakistan loss leaves Babar Azam’s side with no further room for error.
Afghanistan will feel like there’s been little to separate the two sides on far too many occasions, but they’re yet to celebrate an ODI win against their fiercest regional rivals. They were famously denied in a heartbreaker at the 2019 World Cup after being presented with a golden opportunity to knock Pakistan out, and victory on Monday would have a near-similar effect. There have been enough encouraging signs to suggest this could be an evenly poised game, though Afghanistan have peppered patches of brilliance with extended spells of mediocrity with both bat and ball.
Afghanistan (possible): 1 Rahmanullah Gurbaz 2 Ibrahim Zadran 3 Rahmat Shah 4 Hashmatullah Shahidi (capt) 5 Azmatullah Omarzai 6 Ikram Alikhil (wk) 7 Mohammad Nabi 8 Rashid Khan 9 Mujeeb Ur Rahman 10 Naveen-ul-Haq 11 Fazalhaq Farooqi
Pakistan (possible): 1 Abdullah Shafique 2 Imam-ul-Haq 3 Babar Azam (capt) 4 Mohammad Rizwan (wk) 5 Saud Shakeel 6 Mohammad Nawaz/Shadab Khan 7 Iftikhar Ahmed 8 Usama Mir 8 9 Hasan Ali 10 Shaheen Shah Afridi 11 Haris Rauf
Feature: The price of being Babar Azam
The ball wasn’t as short as you might remember it. It wasn’t as much a half-tracker gimme. It was fuller – a good length actually – and very straight, with some zip off the surface. Also, it was Adam Zampa; so a little respect to the deliverer’s intent and skill please.