Cricket World Cup 2019: Day 3 lowdown - all you need to know about Afghanistan v Australia

Here's a quick look at what to expect as a rising Afghanistan side face defending champions Australia in Bristol

Australia captain Aaron Finch has no illusions about how the Afghanistan side may be in Bristol today. Luke Walker / Getty Images
Australia captain Aaron Finch has no illusions about how the Afghanistan side may be in Bristol today. Luke Walker / Getty Images

What is it?

2019 World Cup group stage match

Who is playing?

Afghanistan v Australia

When is it?

Today, 4.30pm (UAE time) start

Where is it being played?

Bristol County Ground, Bristol

How to watch in UAE?

Tune in to OSN Sports Cricket HD or create an online account with Wavo for US$54 (a little less than Dh200). The account will provide customers access to two channels, OSN Cric Xtra 1 and OSN Cric Xtra 2.

What’s their head-to-head like?

Matches: 2

Afghanistan won: 0

Australia won: 2

Form guide (past five games):

Afghanistan: WLWLW

Australia: WWWWW

Afghanistan captain Gulbadin Naib is confident his team have the bowling attack to test the opposition. Nigel French / PA Wire
Afghanistan captain Gulbadin Naib is confident his team have the bowling attack to test the opposition. Nigel French / PA Wire

What they said:

Gulbadin Naib, Afghanistan captain, on facing an in-form Australian side: "We beat Pakistan in our first warm-up game, so anything can happen. We know that Australia is a champion team, but we will giving 100 per cent."

Aaron Finch, Australia captain, has much respect for Afghanistan: “If you look back at 2015 [World Cup], we played them at the Waca which was probably the furthest from their home conditions you could possibly get. And as good as conditions that we could have played in. To see their growth in the last four years, in particular, has been huge.”

Likely XIs:

Afghanistan: Mohammed Shahzad (wk), Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Asghar Afghan, Mohammed Nabi, Gulbadin Naib (c), Najibullah Zadran, Rashid Khan, Mujeeb-ur-Rahman, Hamid Hassan, Dawlat Zadran.

Australia: Aaron Finch (c), David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Steven Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey (wk), Pat Cummins, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa.

Summary:

On paper, this might look like a lopsided contest, and it may well end up that way.

Australia are the defending champions and are in excellent form in one-day international cricket since the turn of the year. They have also benefited from the return of Steve Smith and David Warner. On the other hand, Afghanistan have played just the one World Cup and have made a last-minute change to their captaincy which could prove destabilising.

But the Afghans have a world-class bowling attack, led by leg-spinner Rashid Khan, and while an upset is highly unlikely, they are almost certain to give Finch's men a tough fight.

Should make for an interesting match.

Published: June 1, 2019 09:00 AM

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