After defeating Australia in Test series and ODI series, Men in Blue have landed in New Zealand to play the last foreign tour before ICC World Cup 2019 in England and Wales. India is going to play their 1600th International match and will become the third country to achieve this milestone. India hasn’t won a bilateral series against New Zealand in the past 10 years but records are now just papers for skipper Virat Kohli, as he proved the same in Australia.
India Tour of New Zealand will kick-off from Napier, where India marked their last victory against New Zealand on March 3, 2009. India has faced New Zealand in 101 ODIs, where Indians have won 51 and lost 44. In the last 5 ODI matches between India and New Zealand, India has won 3 ODIs and lost 2 of them. India has registered an only series win against New Zealand in 2009, and will definitely look to turning things in their favour.
Good news for Team India is that the middle batting order of India has strengthened significantly with MS Dhoni coming back to form. He scored 193 runs in 3 ODIs against Australia earning Man of the Series award. On the other hand, Virat Kohli simply seems unstoppable. India might end up doing some experiment with their playing XI in New Zealand series as the latest recruit Shubman Gill was seen sweating out in the nets.
Team India: Virat Kohli the run-machine is the biggest threat from Team India and along with him, MS Dhoni is another trump card within Indian batting line-up. Also, Rohit Sharma is a player who can do a lot of damage to the opponents once he gets going. On the bowling front, Yuzvendra Chahal will be difficult for New Zealand given his incredible form.
Team New Zealand: New Zealand’s has an adequate answer to India’s Virat Kohli in Kane Williamson. Apart from him, the opening pair Martin Guptill and Colin Munro also pose a great threat with the bat to India. Ross Taylor is the most experienced player for New Zealand and will prove to be a big fish to catch. Among the bowlers, Trent Boult can give high-voltage current with speed and swing. Accompanying him, Tim Southee and Mitchell Santner too can hit the stumps and change the pace of the game.
Head to Head in Napier: 6 matches – India wins- 2, New Zealand wins – 4
New Zealand: Ross Taylor, Tim Southee, Lockie Ferguson/Doug Bracewell, Mitchell Santner, Tom Latham (wk), Matt Henry, Martin Guptill, Trent Boult, Kane Williamson (c), Colin Munro, Colin de Grandhomme
India: Mohammad Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal, MS Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (c), Shubman Gill/Dinesh Karthik, Vijay Shankar/Ravindra Jadeja
New Zealand: Ross Taylor, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Mitchell Santner, Henry Nicholls, Colin Munro, Tom Latham (wk), Matt Henry, Martin Guptill, Lockie Ferguson, Colin de Grandhomme, Doug Bracewell, Trent Boult, Kane Williamson (c)
India: Mohammad Shami, K Khaleel Ahmed, Mohammed Siraj, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Shubman Gill, MS Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, Ambati Rayudu, Shikhar Dhawan, Vijay Shankar, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (c)