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Explained: Why Black Caps ODI demolition of Bangladesh matters now more than ever

In years gone by, a home ODI series whitewash over Bangladesh would mean nothing more than a shrug of the shoulders, the only noticeable impact being on the ICC world rankings table.

Matt Henry and Henry Nicholls embrace after defeating Bangladesh. Source: Photosport

The Black Caps have never lost to Bangladesh in any of the 16 ODI games played between the two sides in New Zealand, but it is only recently that maintaining that record means more than just a nice stat.

Following the conclusion of the 2019 World Cup, the International Cricket Council introduced the inaugural World Cup Super League, a qualification process for all nations to qualify for the next World Cup, set to be held in India in 2023.

Thirteen teams are in the league - the 12 full Test-playing nations, and the Netherlands - vying for eight automatic qualifying spots.

Each team plays in four home and four away three-match ODI series over the next three years in a round-robin type format to decide which nations will qualify for the World Cup.

Those teams who do not finish in the top eight must fight it out for the remaining two spots in a ten-team qualifying tournament in Zimbabwe featuring a number of associate nations.

India have already qualified for the tournament given their host status, leaving just seven spots up for grabs for the remaining 12 teams.

The Covid-19 outbreak meant New Zealand's first series of the league was the recently-concluded whitewash of Bangladesh on home soil, a result that secured a valuable 30 points and a strong net run rate.

The Black Caps remaining home series are due to be played against the Netherlands, India and Sri Lanka, while trips to Australia, Ireland, Pakistan and the West Indies also await the number two ranked ODI side.

New Zealand currently sit in third on the league table, ten points behind both England and Australia, but have played far fewer games than the other two, meaning they are in a strong position moving forward.

The Black Caps' next ODI series is scheduled to be played in Pakistan in October.