England vs New Zealand. Defending champions England will meet last edition’s runners-up New Zealand in the ICC World Cup 2023 opener on Thursday.

The ICC One Day International (ODI) World Cup will pick up where it left off as defending champions England are set to cross swords with last edition’s runners-up New Zealand in the 2023 tournament opener on Thursday. Reigning world champions England contested the mother of all finals against the Black Caps at the iconic Lord’s back in 2019. The summit clash finished tied and there was nothing separating the two sides even after the Super Over.

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Thanks to the boundary countback rule, England were crowned champions for the first time in the 50-over format four years ago. New Zealand’s first-ever meeting since the controversial World Cup final against England will take place in India at the 134,000-seater Narendra Modi Stadium. While World Cup-winning captain Eoin Morgan has already retired from the format, veteran all-rounder Ben Stokes was added to the squad following his retirement reversal.

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If that gave fans a reassurance of things being fine in the dressing room, especially with the World Cup lined-up, Shadab Khan’s hilarious banters poked at Babar during the warm-up tie against Australia on Tuesday will certainly lift up the mood.

Stokes doubtful for World Cup opener against New Zealand(England vs New Zealand):

Stokes emerged as the match-winner for England in the epic 2019 World Cup final. Speaking ahead of the ICC World Cup 2023 opener against the Kiwis, England skipper Jos Buttler revealed that Stokes is doubtful as the all-rounder picked up a niggle with his hip. The Englishman also missed the final training session of the defending world champions in Ahmedabad. New Zealand will miss the services of skipper Kane Williamson and pace ace Tim Southee.

FORM GUIDE (last five completed matches)

England – WWWWL

New Zealand – WWLLL

HEAD-TO-HEAD RECORD OVERALL England vs New Zealand(in ODIs):

Matches: 95

New Zealand win: 44

England win: 44

No result: 4

Tied: 3

Did you know?

World champions England have recorded four wins and suffered five defeats in its last 10 meetings against the Kiwis. Before England’s win over New Zealand in the 2019 World Cup group stage tie at Chester-le-Street, the European giants lost five matches against the Kiwis at the World Cup. New Zealand last won a World Cup game against England in 2015. England are also heading to its World Cup opener after defeating New Zealand 3-1 in the bilateral series at home last month. Star pacer Trent Boult is three wickets away from completing 200 scalps in ODIs.

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