India will look to continue to baffle New Zealand with its dosage of spin when the second One-Day International commences at the Bay Oval here on Saturday.
Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal, India’s two wrist-spinners, had taken six wickets between them in the first ODI, catalysing New Zealand’s collapse as it was bowled out for 157. India eventually picked up an eight-wicket win .
India is yet to finalise its middle-order ahead of the World Cup, but is unlikely to tinker much with the playing XI after just one game. Hardik Pandya is set to join the squad in New Zealand after being given the green signal by the Committee of Administrators (CoA), he is likely to be available only from the third ODI.
Rayudu likely to be retained
India’s team management decided to field seaming all-rounder Vijay Shankar at McClean Park, but depending on the conditions, it can bring back Ravindra Jadeja. Middle-order batsman Ambati Rayudu, who scored an unbeaten 13 off 23 on Wednesday, is expected to get another opportunity following a not-so-productive run in the ODIs against Australia.
Shikhar Dhawan’s return to form was perhaps its biggest gain from the first ODI. The southpaw had lean a run Down Under.
“It was a very important innings for Dhawan. We spoke about how he needed to finish games for India, to keep his confidence and if he’s in that mindset, he can be a great asset,” captain Virat Kohli had said after the eight-wicket win.
More changes can be expected in the XI after Kohli takes a break following the third ODI on January 28, creating an opening for the likes of Shubman Gill to debut for India.
New Zealand had won the previous home series against India 4-0, but could be heading towards a reverse if it doesn’t lift its game.
“We were severely outplayed the other day,” said pacer Trent Boult on Friday. “Batsmen are looking to right a few wrongs, come out and set a good platform and obviously put a good target on the board and see what happens from there,” he added.
In Napier, it seemed captain Kane Williamson, who top-scored with 64, was batting on another surface as his batsmen struggled at the other end.
- India: Virat Kohli (c), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, Vijay Shankar, Shubman Gill, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Siraj, Khaleel Ahmed, Ravindra Jadeja, Hardik Pandya.
- New Zealand: Kane Williamson (c), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham, Martin Guptill, Colin de Grandhomme, Trent Boult, Henry Nicholls, Doug Bracewell, Lockie Ferguson, Matt Henry, Colin Munro, Ish Sodhi, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee.
- Match Starts at 7:30 am.