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Cricket World Cup: Final Prediction!

I mentioned in my semi-final picks piece that I'd be very surprised if India lost to New Zealand and surprised I was! Though it was annoying that we had to wait an additional day for half the match to be played, what a match we were treated to in the end. New Zealand's bowling with the new ball was excellent and if you manage to reduce that Indian batting lineup to 5-3, there's no denying that you deserve a place in the World Cup final.

Similarly, England were excellent with the new ball against Australia at Edgbaston. It just goes to show how important those opening periods of each innings are, as both of this year's finalists are there thanks to taking early wickets in the semi-finals (as well some very good early batting in England's case).

We're left with what should be a really good final as both nations look to win their first ever Cricket World Cup. Home advantage does of course make things special for England, though I'm sure any country would love to win a World Cup final at Lord's! Here are my thoughts on the game.

Like most people, including the bookies, I see England as pretty strong favourites for the final though I certainly don't feel as certain as I was that India would defeat NZ in the semi-finals! The hosts have a far stronger and more in-form batting lineup than New Zealand and though the Kiwis have a very good bowling attack, England's is equally strong. A Jonny Bairstow century helped them to a massive 119-run win in the group stage equivalent of this fixture but that means little now given the level of interest and pressure there will be on this game.

New Zealand don't seem to be affected by that pressure and Kane Williamson's brilliant captaincy has the potential to guide the Kiwis to the trophy here. We saw with Martin Guptill's run-out at Old Trafford that these long matches can be decided in just seconds through a piece of brilliance (even if you've had a poor tournament like he has with the bat!) and I expect this game to be pretty tight, especially if NZ bat first. Such moments could be defining once again.

The other slight concern I have for England is that their recent ODI record at Lord's isn't great considering they're supposed to have 'home advantage' - they've won just 3 of their last 8 ODI's at the venue. That said, it's arguably only the most recent 5 (since 2016) of which England have won 3 that should be considered significant given the huge change in approach we've seen from them since the 2015 World Cup that has made them so successful. Eoin Morgan has already said that he'd like his team to stick with that bold, attacking style of play in the final and if they do then I see them winning this match.

On the five occasions that England have batted first in this World Cup, they've scored more than 300 every time; they're the only team to have a 100% record of scoring 300+. Williamson was again fantastic against India but I'm not sure NZ have the batting to match such a total. I'll feel far more confident of an England win if they bat first as a result, but if Morgan's men are chasing, I see this being a tense affair as they'll struggle to score as quickly with the added scoreboard pressure against New Zealand's main three seamers. Prediction: England (comfortable)

Let me know how you see the final going in the comments section below and thanks a lot for playing our predictor throughout this World Cup!

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48,754 caps
I think you right a comfortable win for England , better balanced team.
13 Jul 10:06
53,184 caps
NZ close (narrow) win for an upset !!!!!!!
13 Jul 10:11
12,660 caps
I have picked England (Easy).
13 Jul 13:20
44,414 caps
England easy when batting first. Batting last will be tighter.
14 Jul 08:12
1,848 cap
Can I still make a pick after the toss?
14 Jul 08:45
12,660 caps
Heya Hansie. You cant make your pick after the toss. All predictions need to be made before the start of a game.
14 Jul 11:14
14,327 caps
That Result was a XXXking Disgrace!
15 Jul 16:32
27,858 caps
I agree with you Jersey- Puller . How a team can win a Cricket World Cup based on hitting more boundaries even though they lost more wickets is beyond me . That game should have been declared a tie and a rematch at best . A great game tarnished by idiotic spineless lawmakers. What a ****ing joke , it sickens me and I’m not even a Kiwi ! 16 Jul 07:42
14,327 caps
Thanks for the Trans-Tasman Solidarity Eagle! Coulda been worse, what if it had been Oz & Smith's bat that ricocheted those overthrows? Perish the thought! 16 Jul 18:10
27,858 caps
Interesting scenario , and also if the boundary count was equal before the ricochet. Fleet Street would have dined out on that for decades haha . 17 Jul 02:50
860 caps
Stokes ran a "funny angle" on that ball. Have a look at the footage. On the first run he crossed to the side of wicket the ball (and his partner) was on (via the protected area mind you). On the second run he deviated to his left about 2m coincidentally into the path of Guptill's throw. He also dived way too early for someone genuinely trying to make his ground, again coincidentally coinciding with Guptill's throw. Unless he was *trying to obstruct the field* he would have run the shortest distance between the wickets.
22 Jul 06:58
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