India vs New Zealand: Team India’s predicted XI for 2nd Test - Few big changes on the cards
India vs New Zealand prediction: If India’s World Test Championship campaign needed a wake-up call then Wellington acted as the perfect alarm bell. India were outplayed pretty much in all departments to succumb to a 10 wicket-loss – their first in the World Test Championship - in the opening Test against New Zealand. Virat Kohli and his troops have now travelled to Christchurch – New Zealand’s most successful venue at home – in a must-win game. This is the problem when you lose the first Test in a two-match series. You don’t have any breathing space. Perhaps that is exactly what India need when they take on New Zealand in the second and final Test match at the Hagley Oval starting from February 29.
Here is India’s predicted XI for the India vs New Zealand 2nd Test match at Christchurch.
A solid 35 in the first innings followed by an even better 59 in the second – Mayank Agarwal was easily the best Indian batsman on display on a green Wellington track. If anything, he might be pulled up for the shots he played in both the innings to get himself out. India would be hoping for another good start from the man in form in Christchurch.
Prithvi Shaw has regained his fitness, coach Ravi Shastri has revealed. Even though the opener was not up to the mark in the first Test, he received massive backing from skipper Virat Kohli, who said that the youngster will bounce back once he gains experience. He is expected to be stay in the team.
ALSO WATCH | India vs New Zealand | ‘Conditions for Kiwis were better on day 1’: Ravi Shastri
The India No. 3 didn’t look uncomfortable in the first Test to be honest. In both the innings, he occupied the crease long enough to get a hang of it but was dismissed against the run of play. India would need their solid No.3 to stand up in the must-win match at Christchurch.
Virat Kohli is in an unfamiliar territory. Not scoring runs is very unusual for him but in New Zealand, that has become the norm. The Indian captain is woefully short of runs on this tour. He has managed to score just one half-century in 10 innings on this tour and did not look at all comfortable in the first Test match.
Rahane looked very good in the first innings. Even in the second, he tried to be positive but just like Mayank, he failed to carry on and score big. Rahane will be a key man along with Pujara and Kohli if India are willing to make a turnaround in the second match against New Zealand.
Shubman Gill is expected to make his debut since the Punjab right-hander has shown that he is more than capable in the warm-up game and during the India A series. He could be replacing Hanuma Vihari in the side as India prefer to give debut to players at no. 6 position.
Rishabh Pant’s inclusion in the first Test ahead of Wriddhiman Saha raised a few eyebrows but one can safely say that won’t be the case in the second Test match. The Delhi stumper looked a million dollars before an unfortunate run out cut his innings short in the first innings in the previous Test match. He was good behind the stumps too. Pant would hope to make an impact in the second Test against New Zealand.
It is always a difficult task to choose between Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin – both are such exceptional spinners. To be fair to Ashwin, he did a decent job in the Wellington Test, picking up three wickets on a green track. But what might go in Jadeja’s favour is his superlative batting form and ability to bottle one end up to let the seamers rotate from the other end.
Fast-bowler Mohammed Shami blew hot and cold in the Wellington Test. He was good in patches and woeful in some. Virat Kohli would want his experienced bowler to be more consistent in the second Test match.
Umesh Yadav/Navdeep Saini
Ishant was the lone shining light for India in the first Test. He returned with a well-deserved five-for. But reports suggest that he has suffered an injury, and there is a chance he could be replaced by Umesh Yadav or Navdeep Saini, if he remains unfit. Both the pacers were seen training at the nets on Thursday. Ishant’s absence will be a huge blow for the Indian bowling attack.
Just like Virat Kohli, India’s premier fast bowler, Jasprit Bumrah too has been majorly disappointing in this New Zealand tour. Bumrah picked up just 1 wicket in the first session and gave way too many boundary balls for comfort.
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- Former England captains Michael Vaughan, Kevin Pietersen, and Alastair Cook have spoken against the surface at the Narendra Modi Stadium.
- Former England captains Michael Vaughan, Kevin Pietersen and Alastair Cook have criticised the pitch in the third Test.
- A case in point is his last innings in Test cricket when he scored a gritty 96 in the second innings on a vicious turner in Bengaluru. His efforts went in vain as India lost the match and the series to Pakistan.
- Ind vs Eng: England got knocked out of contention for WTC final in June with their 10-wicket triumph in the day-night third Test at the Narendra Modi Stadium.
- India vs England, 3rd Test: He was awarded the man of the match award for his spectacular performance against England in his home ground.
- “I think we need to stand up and take notice of what Ashwin has done. In Tests, he is a modern-day legend. As a captain, I am so pleased he is in my team,” Kohli said at the post-match presentation.
- This is a man who has been the fastest in the world to reach 200, 250 and 350 Test wickets, and yet derided for being someone who thrives only on home conditions.
- Ind vs Eng: The visitors were bundled out for 112 and 81 in consecutive days as India completed a 10-wicket win to take an unassailable 2-1 lead in the series. A total of 17 wickets fell on the second day.