New Zealand vs. Australia – Third T20I, March 3, 2021
New Zealand will be looking to secure a comprehensive series win over Australia by winning the third of five T20s between the teams on Wednesday, March 3.
The Blackcaps thrashed the Aussies by 53 runs in the first game before winning the second match by just four runs. Can the hosts take an unassailable 3-0 lead on Wednesday?
You can find my New Zealand vs. Australia prediction and pick below. But first, let’s check out the odds for the third T20I.
New Zealand vs. Australia Third T20I Odds
Following back-to-back wins, New Zealand (1.76) heads into the third T20 as the bookmakers’ favorite, with Australia (1.95) coming in as the outsiders.
But as you can see, the leading online sportsbooks clearly don’t believe that there is much between the teams, as the odds gaps is extremely marginal here.
I assess both sides’ chances below.
New Zealand vs. Australia Third T20I Preview
Australia was the narrow favorite before this five-match series got underway. But following a couple of impressive performances, the Blackcaps are now well and truly on top.
Devon Conway smashed 99* off 59 to give the New Zealanders a huge advantage in the first game before Ish Sodhi claimed figures of 4/28. Chasing 184/5, the tourists were bowled out for just 131 after 17.3 overs.
However, the Kiwis didn’t have it all their own way last time out. Martin Guptill’s 97 set the hosts on their way, with Kane Williamson (53) and Jimmy Neesham (45*) chipping in with eye-catching cameos. But the Aussies came out and fighting and eventually fell just four runs short.
Mitchell Santner was New Zealand’s star with the ball in the previous match, sealing figures of 4/31. But elsewhere, Tim Southee, Trent Boult, and Kyle Jamieson all produced expensive spells.
There is no denying that the Blackcaps deserve their 2-0 series lead. However, after almost slipping up last time out, they will surely be wary of the threat that Australia poses.
It’s fair to say that Australia was totally humiliated in the series opener. Mitch Marsh (45) was the visitors’ top run-scorer, while Jyhe Richardson (2/31) and Daniel Sams (2/40) put in decent displays with the ball. But other than that, it was a game to forget for the Aussies.
However, the tourists looked like a completely different team in the last match.
Kane Richardson claimed figures of 3/43, despite a number of impressive performances from the home side’s batsmen. With the bat, Marcus Stoinis smashed 78 off 37, while Josh Philippe (45) fell just five runs short of a maiden T20I half-century.
Daniel Sams managed to score 41 runs off just 15 deliveries in the final couple of overs, yet despite his best efforts, Australis was unable to get over the line.
Following a dismal showing in the series opener, it goes without saying that the Aussies performed far better in the previous game. They must now performer even better if they want to turn the series around.
New Zealand vs. Australia Third T20I Pick
Australia to Win1.95
Ultimately, it is difficult to imagine a team of Australia’s quality losing three matches in a row. New Zealand has outsmarted the visitors in the previous two games, but I can see the tourists bouncing back this time around.
After getting off to the worst possible start, the Aussies came agonizingly close to sealing the victory last time out. With players like Philippe and Sams now seemingly in their grove, I’m backing Australia to win this one.