Team India has had a great World Cup campaign until now. Their seven-wicket win over Sri Lanka at Headingley on Saturday ensured that they ended on a winning note and leapfrogged Australia after their 10-run defeat by South Africa. India's win and Australia's defeat meant that the 2011 winners topped the points table and face fourth-place New Zealand at Old Trafford. It will be an intriguing match-up as these two sides have not played each other at this World Cup. Their game at Trent Bridge on June 13 was abandoned without a ball bowled. People are already calling it 'the match that was washed out, will now be a knockout'
Virat Kohli and men have been phenomenal with all departments firing full cylinders under the leadership whereas Kiwis’ skipper, Kane Willamson has led his team from the front.
This semi-final is special as the Black Caps are in the World Cup semi-finals for the eighth time while the Men in Blue in their seventh. This semi-final also has eerie similarities with 2008’s U-19 World Cup semi-finals.
That year, India and New Zealand met in the semi-finals. Kohli and Willamson both made their way into national teams after promising performances in their U-19 teams. Surprisingly, both current skippers led the two sides in 2008.
Ravindra Jadeja, Trent Boult and Tim Southee who are in the current squads were also part of the squad in the U-19 semis. Kohli who was the Man of the Match that match also took Kane Willamson’s wicket.
The knockout semi-final on Tuesday will be nothing short of intense as both teams will put their best foot forward.
India U-19 went on to win that semi-final and eventually the U-19 World Cup in 2008. Will history repeat itself? Fans will have to wait and see.