2nd Test, New Zealand vs England: Key battles on offer
New Zealand and England gear up for the second match of the two-Test series, starting Friday at the Seddon Park in Hamilton. The Kiwis beat England by an innings and 65 runs and have a 1-0 lead. England have to produce substance in order to level the series. Here's the preview and key battles on offer.
The Kiwis will be without Trent Boult and Colin de Grandhomme. Northern Districts all-rounder Daryl Mitchell is set to replace De Grandhomme, whereas, Matt Henry or Lockie Ferguson could come in for left-arm pacer Boult. Jos Buttler is a doubt for England and Ollie Pope will keep wickets if the former is unavailable. One expects another stiff battle in this match.
Sam Curran looked exciting in the first Test and claimed three scalps. His peach of a delivery was crucial in getting NZ skipper Kane Williamson out. Curran has pace and variations. He also gets the desired bounce when required. He will once again look to be instrumental against Williamson and get the key breakthrough. Williamson looked solid in the first Test and is crucial.
Tim Southee showed his experience in the first Test and claimed five wickets in total. The senior pacer got all-rounder Ben Stokes twice. The latter looked set on both occasions and Southee got his scalp in crucial moments. Stokes went hard on the drive in the first innings and was dismissed after a stunner at slips. Stokes was bowled in the second innings.
Light showers are expected to play a role in the Test. The pacers will be in the game with the overcast conditions on offer. The match is set to start at 3:30 AM IST and will be telecast live on the Star Sports Network. Dream11: Burns, Denly, Root, Williamson (captain), Watling (wk), Pope, Stokes (vc), Santner, Southee, Wagner and Archer.