Date & Time: Wednesday, February 05, 07:30 IST
Venue: Seddon Park, Hamilton, New Zealand
Shift of gears as the challenge moves to the longer format of the white ball
India is high on confidence after white washing their opponent in the T20Is and will be looking to repeat the same in the ODIs as they did in 2019. Though they lost the T20I series when they toured in 2019, they managed to beat the Black-caps in the ODI series. However, India is struck with a blow as Rohit is ruled out for the remainder of the series that is three ODI’s and two Tests. Mayank Agarwal has been called in as a replacement for the fellow opener. The bowling department will be led by Bumrah and especially Shami, who has had a sensational 2019 in the longer format of the white ball.
An inflated performance is required for New Zealand to recover from a disastrous T20I series. New Zealand will be going up against a relatively young Indian squad, specifically in the batting line up. Apart from Kohli, none of the top 5 batsmen of India would have played more than 30 matches. Still, New Zealand also has their own negatives in the bowling line up especially Southee, who will be burdened with a huge load in the bowling department. On top of all, New Zealand will be playing their first ODI post the 2019 World Cup. New Zealand would be happy with the fact that they happened to beat India at this venue in 2019, that also being an extremely demoralising defeat. India was bundled out for 92 in that match.
Rohit Sharma’s injury is major set back for India. As Kohli confirmed in the press conference a day ago in Hamilton, Lokesh Rahul will don the wicket-keeping gloves and both Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal will make their debut for India in ODIs. As for New Zealand, Hamish Bennett’s performance in the T20I series should prompt him to be the first choice of bowler with Southee. For the vacant third seamer spot Kuggeleijn and Kyle Jamieson will be in contention. Another injury blow in the New Zealand unit as their skipper hasn’t still recovered from a shoulder injury. Mark Chapman has been called in as replacement for the first two ODIs
New Zealand Probable XI: Martin Guptill, Henry Nicholls, Tom Blundell, Ross Taylor, Tom Latham ( c & wk), Jimmy Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Hamish Bennett, Kyle Jamieson.
India Probable XI: Prithvi Shaw, Mayank Agarwal, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Lokesh Rahul (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini, Jasprit Bumrah.
Though being a small ground, the Seddon Park hasn’t seen much of 300+ totals in the first innings since 2015. In the 11 matches played in this time frame, an average of 253 runs is scored with 8 wickets per innings lost, only once has there been a score of 300+. The average score shows that the teams chasing haven’t had too much off pressure, eight of those 11 games have been won by teams chasing. The pacers have bagged 95 wickets and the spinners have 50 wickets to their name, both have conceded more than 5 runs per over.
This man continues to impress one and all again and again. Just like his skipper who is known as a run machine, Rahul is also turning into one in the limited overs format. He had a great 2019 year in ODI scoring over 500 runs at an average of 47.7 and this year as well he took off well against Australia. Now that he has added weight on him for being the senior opener, Rahul will have to put on extra efforts. In the last three months he has a PPM of 76.33 and an MDTA of 1.5 which is very impressive. Its a certainty that Rahul has to be in the fantasy team.
Just as his first name suggests, his numbers in ODI are gigantic. Since 2017, this guy has been a ruler in ODI’s, he has scored over 1000 runs in all the three years. It just shows how easily he scores runs. He is the only Indian top 5 batsman who has played more than 50 matches, this adds more pressure on him and this guy loves handling pressure. He has PPM of 60.0 and an MDTA of 2.0 in the last three months, his selection in the fantasy team is a no-brainier.
New Zealand’s highest run scorer in ODI has been in top notch form. In the last three years he has been the most consistent batsman for them scoring at an average close to 65 since 2017 in ODIs. His record against India and at this venue is something that has to be taken into consideration as well.
The highest wicket-taker of 2019 in ODIs made a superb comeback to his ODI cricket after being sidelined because of injury. Mohammed Shami bagged 42 wickets in 2019, which is the most by a bowler. He had a good series to start of with against Australia, where he picked 7 wickets. Shami has PPM of 60.0, which is the best among Indian bowlers.