India vs NZ, 2nd Test: Virat Kohli elects to bat
India and New Zealand are squaring off in the second and final Test at Wankhede. The finalists of the WTC final meet in another final after the first Test ended in a draw. Notably, Tom Latham is leading New Zealand in place of Kane Williamson, who is suffering from an exacerbated left elbow injury. Virat Kohli has won the toss and elected to bat.
Key details about the match
The 2nd Test is being held at Wankhede, where the toss got delayed due to wet outfield. The wicket on this venue favors the batters as they can play on the up. Besides, fast bowlers garner extra pace and bounce. One can watch the game live on the Star Sports Network and stream the same on the Hotstar app (paid subscription).
Ishant, Jadeja, and Rahane ruled out of second Test
In a huge blow for Team India, Ishant Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, and Ajinkya Rahane have been ruled out of the second Test. Pace spearhead Ishant had dislocated his left little finger on Day 5 of the 1st Test. Meanwhile, all-rounder Jadeja suffered a right forearm injury during same Test. Rahane suffered a minor hamstring strain while fielding on the final day.
Williamson to miss the 2nd Test
Team News | BLACKCAPS captain Kane Williamson will miss the second and final Test against India in Mumbai as he continues to battle the left-elbow injury which has troubled him for much of 2021. More | https://t.co/VClIKxKI8Q #INDvNZ pic.twitter.com/wGeA46LN4g— BLACKCAPS (@BLACKCAPS) December 3, 2021
Virat Kohli returns to the Test fold
Regular skipper Virat Kohli returns to lead Team India in Test cricket. The 33-year-old missed the three-match T20I series and the Test series opener to rejuvenate. Kohli still eyes his first international ton in over two years. He last scored a century in November 2019, against Bangladesh (D/N Test, 136 at Eden Gardens in Kolkata. Notably, Kohli hasn't scored a ton in 50 internationals.
Here are the two teams
New Zealand (Playing XI): Tom Latham (captain), Will Young, Daryl Mitchell, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, Tom Blundell(w), Rachin Ravindra, Kyle Jamieson, Tim Southee, William Somerville, Ajaz Patel. India (Playing XI): Mayank Agarwal, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (captain), Shreyas Iyer, Wriddhiman Saha(w), Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Jayant Yadav, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj.
A look at the interesting stats
As per ESPNcricinfo, India last failed to win at least one match in a Test series at home in 2003 (against New Zealand). India have lost just two home Tests to NZ. On the other hand, NZ are unbeaten in Test cricket since January 2020. They have won against India, West Indies, and Pakistan, as well as drawn two Tests ever since.