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How will the Narendra Modi pitch play in the Cricket World Cup final?

18 Nov 2023
Simon Lewis 18 Nov 2023
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  • The 132 000-seater Narendra Modi Stadium to host 2023 CWC final.
  • Unbeaten India play five-time winners Australia in the final.
  • India have won the World Cup twice, once at home.
Narendra Modi Stadium
Pat Cummins inspects the pitch ahead of the CWC final. (credit: Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

The venue for the final

Ahmedabad’s Narendra Modi Stadium in Gujarat, India, is the scene for what could be one of the highest-scoring ODIs of all time, judging by the batting talent on display, although the pitch is unlikely to encourage such a festival of strokeplay. However, both sides also boast incredible fire-power in their bowling line-ups, so it is possible that we could be in for a relatively low-scoring match if either side’s bowlers hit their marks like they did in their semi-finals.

The venue during the 2023 World Cup

Ahmedabad has been a good hunting ground for spin and pace bowlers during this World Cup. While the pacemen (35 wickets) have taken a bigger slice of the wickets on offer, the spinners (22) haven’t been short of wickets and have also proven far more economical, going for just 4.89 runs an over.

Four matches have been played at Ahmedabad in this year’s CWC, with three being won by the side chasing. The opening match of the tournament saw New Zealand romp home against the defending champions England, chasing their target of 283 down in under 37 overs.

A toss-up

The stadium might favour the side batting second, but both sides might be reluctant to choose to chase as the pressure of chasing in the final might not be what they would want to deal with when the heat rises.

Scoring on the pitch has been low and slow, with the highest score to date in the tournament being Australia’s 286 against England, who were bowled out for 253.

Of the 30 ODIs played at the venue, 15 have been won by the side batting first and 15 by the side batting second.

CWC 2023 match results

New Zealand restricted England to 282/9 off their 50 overs, before chasing the target down in 36.2 overs.

The second match at the venue saw India beat Pakistan by seven wickets. Pakistan could only muster 191 in 42.5 overs, India hitting their target in 30.2 overs.

Australia beat England by batting first and scoring 286 off 49.3 overs. England were then bowled out for 253 off 48.1 overs.

South Africa then beat Afghanistan after bowling them out for 244 off the last ball of their 50 overs. South Africa chased down their target off 47.3 overs for the loss of just five wickets.

The pitch for the final

It’s reported that the final will be played on the same pitch as the low-scoring match between India and Pakistan, lasting just 73 overs in total. 

Expect the spinners to have a major role to play in the match, while the quicker bowlers will be looking to mix things up with some carefully selected cutters, slow balls and bouncers.

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