With an aim to overcome the test drubbing, New Zealand is all set to face hosts India in a 5-match ODI series starting tomorrow at the picturesque HPCA stadium in Dharamsala.
India vs New Zeland 1st ODI Match Overview
High on confidence after their top-notch show in the test series, India would welcome back talismanic skipper MS Dhoni back for the shorter format of the game. It will be wrong to call it a second-string India side, but with big bowling guns like Mohammed Shami, Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja being rested and Bhuvaneshwar Kumar missing out due to injury, India won’t be at their full strength as far as the bowling is concerned.
Lokesh Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan’s injury has opened the doors for youngsters like Mandeep Singh and Hardik Pandya. Kedhar Jadhav seems to be most profitable one in Suresh Raina’s absence for the first ODI.
The two regular openers’ absence might see Ajinkya Rahane join Rohit Sharma at the top of the order.
Hardik Pandya’s return to the squad will see him as an all-rounder at No.7 in all probability.
Amit Mishra will lead the spin attack guiding Axar Patel and Jayant Yadav. In the pace department, Umesh Yadav will shoulder the new ball responsibilities with Yorker-specialist Jasprit Bumrah, but Dhawal Kulkarni’s swing capabilities might just squeeze him in the XI, at least for the Dharamsala ODI.
The 2015 ICC World Cup runners-up would hope the change in the colour of clothing will trigger a change in the fortunes too. After being completely outplayed in the tests, New Zealand will be bolstered by the addition of pace spearhead Tim Southee along with all-rounders Corey Anderson and Anton Devchich.
In the white-ball format, New Zealand is a different proposition. Captain Kane Williamson will hope Neesham’s batting efforts in the Indore test and Anderson’s all-round capabilities come the team’s rescue.
Brendon McCullum's adieu to the game will see Tom Latham and Devchich vie for the slot of the opening partner of Martin Guptill.
Mitchell Santner might edge out Ish Sodhi as the solitary spinner, with Southee, Trent Boult and Matt Henry forming the pace trio. The Black Caps think tank will also pray the ODIs will see Ross Taylor in a different avatar as he remains crucial to New Zealand’s batting hopes.
India vs New Zealand ODIs – Key Players
Fresh from his second double hundred, Kohli will look forward to his happy hunting ground at the HPCA stadium where he struck a hundred in India’s last ODI at the venue against West Indies in 2014. The No.2 ODI batsman will once again remain India’s best bat against New Zealand.
Guptill's knock of 72 in the first innings in the Indore test has injected a new lease of life in his flagging tour. His epic unbeaten 237 in last year’s World Cup may be a thing of past, but it gives enough hint of his calibre in his favourite format. In his last 10 ODI innings, he has six 50+ scores, making it clear what Guptill is when it comes to ODIs.
India vs New Zealand 1st ODI Probable XI
India: Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli, Manish Pandey, MS Dhoni(C&WK), Kedhar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel, Amit Mishra, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah
New Zealand: Martin Guptill, Anton Devchich/Tom Latham, Kane Williamson (C), Ross Taylor, Corey Anderson, James Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Luke Ronchi (WK), Tim Southee, Matt Henry, Trent Boult.
Venue: Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, Dharamsala
Date and Time: 16 October 2016 | 1330 IST | 0800 GMT
TV Schedule: Star Sports 1, Star Sports HD 1, Star Sports 3, Star Sports HD 3
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