After a drubbing in 1st ODI at Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai the action moves 130 km away to MCA’s international stadium in Gahunje. The New Zealand will be eyeing a series win, their first on Indian soil while there is plenty to think about for team India.
It will be fair to say that New Zealand won the first ODI than India losing it. India was outplayed in all 3 departments of the game. Indians must’ve expected Kiwis to crumble against spinners. But New Zealand had other plans. They applied themselves really well, much much better than what Australia did a month ago. They made Indian spinners look like they have lost their ex-factor. Tom Latham has pushed down the order to maneuver the spinners and the gamble paid off. Veteran Ross Taylor showed his class at the other end. Together they saw New Zealand home.
India, on the other hand, failed to strike at regular intervals in middle overs. That was their one big shortcoming, other being not able to put up a big score on the board.
They will be looking to put this defeat behind in avoiding what could be a very humiliating series defeat if it turns out that way.
The focus will be on:
Kane Williamson: The New Zealand skipper failed in the first match. A big score is due from him in the second. After all, he is a man for big occasions.
Yuzavendra Chahal: The leggie didn’t enjoy much success in the first game. He will be hoping to make Kiwis dance to his tunes.
Tom Latham: The left-handed wicketkeeper-batsman who scored a hundred portrayed great skills to counter spinners. He is just one more good knock away from sealing the series.
Last time ODI was played here 350 was chased. In the last test played here ball turned square. So it will be interesting to see how wicket plays but most likely it will be another high scoring pitch.
In all likelihood, India will go unchanged. Dhawan and Rohit will open which means Rahane will have to wait for his chances. Kedar Jadhav will be given another chance to bat at 4 and Karthik will retain his place. Any change in bowling department after just one bad game seems unnecessary.
Probable XI: Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (c), Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, MS Dhoni (wk), Hardik Pandya, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzavendra Chahal.
Just as India, New Zealand are unlikely to make any changes to their XI. They say never disturb winning combination and New Zealand don’t have a reason to do so. Guptill and Munro to open followed by a strong middle order of Williamson, Taylor, and Latham and then 3 genuine seamers. For New Zealand, all-rounders are key as they add stability to the side.
Probable XI: Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Kane Williamson (c), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (wk), Henry Nicolls, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Adam Milne, Tim Southee, Trent Boult.
– by Atharva Apte