New Zealand vs India, 1st Test Match Prediction2020-02-22
Basin Reserve, Wellington, New Zealand
Can India continue its dominant run in the ICC Test Championship?
We predict India will win this match!
T&Cs apply, 18+
It’s time for some red-ball action when New Zealand take on India in the two-match series starting February 21 at Basin Reserve stadium in Wellington. Earlier, in the tour we witnessed two contrasting results where initially India won the T20 series 5-0, Kiwis bounced back and whitewashed the ODI series 3-0. Every game of the tournament thus far had been very competitive and we can expect nothing less in the five-day game.
The home side, New Zealand would be coming to this game high on confidence after winning the preceding ODI series. Besides, the Kiwis squad boosted by the return of one of their stars in paceman Trent Boult who is included after overcoming a hand injury that forced him to sit out the white-ball matches. Though Kiwis are intimidating at home following the win in seven out of their last eight test series under Ken Williamson captaincy, they need to be at their best when they take on India - the ICC number one Test side.
On the other side, India’s recent record in Test match has been extraordinary as they won all their last seven test matches and sitting comfortably at top of the table in test championship. However, India will be playing their first match of a Test championship overseas and it would be a different challenge for the team. Lately, the biggest positives for India has been the remarkable form of their pace unit comprising Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami and Ishant Sharma. Bowling trio has been a brilliant and arguably best attack in red-ball cricket in last year. Furthermore, skipper Virat Kohli is the ICC top-ranked batsman and he is consistently scoring run at all stages. India would look to rectify the mistakes in the ODI series and seek resurgence in the Test series.
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The Blackcaps would be riding high on confidence following the success in the ODI series and they would be aiming to clean-sweep against India in test series as well. However, the Kiwis have lost 4 out of their last 5 Test matches and hence they are currently nowhere in the Test championship race. 2-0 win in the series would give Kiwis good chance to compete for the finals.
Likewise, opponent, Kiwis batting line-up is pretty stable and strong. At the top, Tom Latham is likely to open the inning with Tom Blundell. Tom Blundell has got great success in the Test series against Aussies. At three, skipper Ken Williamson; ICC fourth-ranked test batsman. He possesses great techniques and temperament considered necessary to get success in the longer format of the game. He is the player to watch out for in any contest. Veteran Ross Taylor will bat at no.4, he is in great form lately scored 651 runs from last 14 innings. A lot would depend on the batting duo to score most of the runs against quality Indian attack.
Henry Nicholls will bat at no. 5, while the 6th and the 7th spot will be occupied by the wicket-keeper batsman BJ Watling and the all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme respectively. BJ Watling has done a stupendously and played many crucial innings batting down the order. He scored 587 runs in the last 13 innings at an average of 48.91. He would look to carry on good form.
In the bowling department, the return of Trent Boult makes the Kiwis attack dreadful. He can trouble the top-order Indian batsmen with his ball swinging skills both sides. Kiwis prime bowler, Neil Wagner is likely to miss the first game due to personal reason and that would offer Kyle Jamieson the test debut. Kyle Jamieson has been brilliant in the ODI series. Tim Southee and Ajaz Patel will be other bowlers in the side.
Key Player – Kane Williamson, Tom Latham, Trent Boult
Tom Latham, Ross Taylor, Ajaz Patel, Henry Nicholls, Colin de Grandhomme, KS Williamson, Trent Boult, TA Blundell, BJ Watling, TG Southee, Kyle Jamieson
|C de Grandhomme||58||28||6||3||207.14|
The whole Indian team will take great confidence from their recent success in Test matches against South Africa, Bangladesh and West Indies. Furthermore, India has played stupendously over the last couple of years to defeat the formidable opponent in overseas conditions. All their batsmen, pacers and spinners are playing their role to perfections in recent times.
In the absence of regular opener Rohit Sharma, Prithvi is likely to get a chance to open along with Mayank Agrawal. It will be a good opportunity for P Shaw to display his class and make the most of the opportunity. On the other hand, Mayank Agrawal has been in superb form; he is India’s top scorer in recent times, scored 677 runs from the last 10 innings.
Star-studded Indian batting is led by skipper Virat Kohli, arguably one of the best batsmen in world cricket at the moment. He is currently top-ranked ICC test batsmen. He is a world-class player and always found the way of scoring runs at all levels. Virat scored 589 runs in the last 10 innings at an average of 73. Vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane also has been in brilliant form lately, scored 624 runs in the last 10 innings. Pujara and Hanuman Vihari will be the other specialist batsmen in the squad.
Indian bowling unit is very formidable which can run through the Kiwis batting line-up. Pacer Mohammed Shami has been in stupendous form with the red ball, he picked 31 wickets from last 14 games at an average of 15.74. Ishant Sharma (25 wickets from 12 innings) and Umesh Yadav(23 wickets from 8 innings) have also supported brilliantly from other ends; Ravi Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja are going to be fighting out for the lone spinner's job.
Key Players: Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Mohammed Shami
Ravichandran Ashwin, Ajinkya Rahane, Mayank Agarwal, H Vihari, Prithvi Shaw, Ishant Sharma, Cheteshwar Pujara, Rishabh Pant, JJ Bumrah, Virat Kohli, Mohammed Shami
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||21||0 mm.||12.26 k/h||From: NNW||49%|
|03h||21||0 mm.||10.86 k/h||From: NNW||77%|
|06h||20||0 mm.||12.28 k/h||From: NNW||88%|
|09h||20||0.13 mm.||11.54 k/h||From: NNW||100%|
|12h||19||0 mm.||10.57 k/h||From: NNW||99%|
|15h||18||0 mm.||9.74 k/h||From: NNW||3%|
|18h||18||0 mm.||10.54 k/h||From: NNW||50%|
|21h||19||0 mm.||12.59 k/h||From: NNW||100%|
Temperatures will range from 19-22 celsius in generally cloudy skies but there is a decent chance of rain throughout the Test. The overcast conditions will assist the swing bowler and both sides got good swing bowlers.
The match will be played at the Basin Reserve stadium in Wellington. Basin Reserve is the oldest test cricket ground in New Zealand. The venue provides a good cricket wicket. Usually provides a little for the ball and bat.
Out of 63 test matches played at this venue, 27 times team bowling first won the game whereas only 12 times batting the first team won the game. Besides, In New Zealand, compared to other countries, the first and innings score is usually less and witnessed higher scorer in third and fourth innings. The batting becomes easier as the match goes one.
Hence, after winning the toss, the team is expected to bowl first
India is absolutely flying in all formats of the game right now but they seem to be prioritizing Test matches and the new Test Championship. Both sides have contrasting results in test games lately, India has been very dominant as they undefeated in the championship, on the other hand, Kiwis, won just one out of five games. We expect it to be a thrilling game as both the teams are having great squads however we predict India will have an edge considering their recent performance in red-ball cricket.
We predict India will win this match!
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