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27th Nov, 2021

Moeen prepares to face old pals in World Cup semi

Rob George 10th Nov, 2021

MOEEN Ali is gearing up for a battle against three of his former Worcestershire Rapids teammates when England face New Zealand in Wednesday’s ICC Men’s T20 World Cup semi-final.

Martin Guptill, Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi are all expected to be part of the Black Caps side to face England in Abu Dhabi.

Moeen could be in direct competition with opener Guptill if he continues taking the new ball.

He will know from first-hand knowledge the destructive powers of Guptill from his two years at New Road in 2018 and 2019 in helping the Rapids to win the Vitality Blast and finish runners-up.

Moeen was part of the Rapids side when Guptill smashed an incredible 35-ball century against Northamptonshire Steelbacks at Wantage Road in 2018 as they chased down a 188 target in 13.1 overs.

It was the second quickest T20 century in England and won him the Walter Lawrence Trophy for the fastest domestic hundred that summer.

Guptill played seven games in 2018 and nine in 2019 as the Rapids showed how formidable they could be in T20 cricket with those memorable finals days at Edgbaston.

Santner had spells with the Rapids in 2016 and 2017, although the first spell was cut short by injury.

Fellow spinner Sodhi showed his quality during some excellent spells last summer for the Rapids as they narrowly missed out on the knockout stages of the Blast.

In the other semi-final, Australia will take on Pakistan on Thursday, with Worcestershire 2022 signing Matthew Wade in their line-up.

 

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