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India vs New Zealand: India Look to End Kiwi Tour With Historic Series Victory

India will be looking to end a rather successful Trans-Tasman tour with a victory when they take on New Zealand in the third and final T20 in Hamilton on Sunday.

Cricketnext Staff |February 9, 2019, 9:01 PM IST
India vs New Zealand: India Look to End Kiwi Tour With Historic Series Victory

India will be looking to end a rather successful Trans-Tasman tour with a victory when they take on New Zealand in the third and final T20 in Hamilton on Sunday.

The Men in Blue will have a chance to script history as Rohit and Co. will look to seal India’s first ever T20I series victory in New Zealand. After steamrolling the Blackcaps in the ODIs, T20I series has been a bit more closely fought affair with both teams testing their bench strength.

It was the Kiwis who landed the first punch with a convincing win in Wellington but a successful fightback from the visitors in Auckland meant that we're in for a thrilling finale.

"It's been a long tour but it's important that we learned from our mistakes in the first T20I. Now we are looking forward to the deciding T20I," skipper Rohit Sharma had said after the second T20I.

The young Indian bowling has been tested but the likes of Krunal Pandya and Khaleel Ahmed’s performances so far will give the team management some assurance.

Hardik Pandya has also been impressive; getting some much-needed match practice after his extended stay on the sidelines due to injury and off-field controversy.

India have gone in with an unchanged XI in both the games so far with skipper Rohit Sharma insisting that it is important to give the players some game time.

But come the final T20I India might look to bring in Kuldeep Yadav as the left-arm leggie has troubled the Kiwis throughout the ODIs but Yuzvendra Chahal has been preferred in the two games so far.

The question though will remain who does he replace as all the bowlers have performed well so far in the series.

Sidharth Kaul is another bowler who might be considered if the management wants to give either Bhuvneshwar Kumar or Khaleel a break.

New Zealand’s strength has been the performance of their batsmen, with opener Tim Seifert providing blazing starts supported by the likes of Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor and Colin de Grandhomme.

Tim Southee also seems to have regained his rhythm and will look to continue in the same vein ahead of the World Cup. Lockie Ferguson and Ish Sodhi have been the other two standout performers.

But the hosts have been plagued by inconsistencies and that is something which will surely hurt the team which takes a lot of pride in playing some high quality cricket. A trophy against India will surely give their fans something to cheer about.

In-form Jimmy Neesham might get a look in for Scott Kuggeleijn while Colin Munro – who was also dropped for the ODI’s against Bangladesh – will also find it difficult to keep his spot.

Squads:

New Zealand: Kane Williamson (capt), Doug Bracewell, Colin de Grandhomme, Lockie Ferguson, Scott Kuggeleijn, Colin Munro, Daryl Mitchell, Mitchell Santner, Tim Seifert, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Blair Tickner, James Neesham.

India: Rohit Sharma (capt), Shikhar Dhawan, Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni, Krunal Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Siddarth Kaul, K Khaleel Ahmed, Shubman Gill, Vijay Shankar, Hardik Pandya.

Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4027 115
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 4366 104
5 Australia 3270 99
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7748 277
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4720 262
4 India 8620 261
5 Australia 5471 261
see more