New Zealand will be hoping for more from their top three but mid-sequence, led by Devon Conway, offers significant depth
Australia needs to recover quickly in the second match of the series played off the pitch at Hagley Oval. It looked good at the start when they claimed three goals in the powerplay, however Devon ConwayThe 99 experts lifted New Zealand to a hefty number and then they claimed four goals in an fielding ban.
The fact that this match, which marks Dunedin’s first T20I, is a daily match likely means less fluctuation in conditions as the match progresses although if there is a chance to make a swing, Team Southee and Trent Boult are as good as anyone in finding it.
Australia refused to use two weeks of managed isolation as an excuse for their opening performance – they have been able to train to a high level in that period – but hope that the right match allows them to prepare. The advantage of this five-game series is that there is a chance to bounce back.
Jhye Richardson’s return to international cricket promising enough and Mitchell Marsh looks to be in decent form with that stick, but other than that the results are slim from Christchurch. New Zealand will expect the better of their top three, but their mid-sequence form – led by Conway – means they have the depth and confidence to rebuild.
(last five games completed)
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In the spotlight
Aaron Finch and Martin Guptill came to this series with a question mark over the shape and neither of them survived their respective first innings. The two also fell in very similar fashion, directing the catch to the point, although Finch’s placement was more of a problem as he hit the ball cleanly. They each have strong T20I records (Finch average 37.06 and Guptill 31.20 with two centuries each) but with the others pressing for a chance at the top, or key players to return, some runs will come in handy.
Ball swinging has long been the downside of Australia’s batting orders and while daylight conditions in Dunedin may make it less of a factor, it will be interesting to see how they counter it if there is a move. The T20 doesn’t give a lot of time to show bowlers caution but may need to be a little more wary of Southee and Boult before catching up on the others.
Mark Chapman and Hamish Bennett were two members of the squad who weren’t used in the first game, but unless there’s a distraction, or a desire to rotate, there’s no need to make changes.
New Zealand (probable) 1 Martin Guptill, 2 Tim Seifert, 3 Kane Williamson (captain), 4 Devon Conway, 5 Glenn Phillips, 6 Jimmy Neesham, 7 Mitchell Santner, 8 Kyle Jamieson, 9 Tim Southee, 10 Ish Sodhi, 11 Trent Boult
Australia leaves with an extra allrounder (Daniel Sams) on Monday and may need to consider whether it’s worthy of a fast specialist – perhaps Jason Behrendorff’s left arm – instead. Despite the shoddy turnaround of batting displays, there is little chance at the start of the series.
Australia (probable) 1 Aaron Finch, 2 Josh Philippe, 3 Matthew Wade (wk), 4 Glenn Maxwell, 5 Marcus Stoinis, 6 Mitchell Marsh, 7 Ashton Agar, 8 Jhye Richardson, 9 Kane Richardson, 10 Adam Zampa, 11 Jason Behrendorff
Pitch and conditions
With this being Oval University’s first T20I there is no continuing history, but the recent Super Smash gave an indication that it could be a high score. The Central District makes 223 while in other matches the North District hits 191. The weather forecast is for a dry but cool day.
Statistics and trivia
“Obviously the result didn’t go our way, but we did a lot of good things, especially in the early bowling innings. With our batting I think it was one of those things, New Zealand did really well bowling and got the ball moving and catching it. we were a little off guard. “
Andrew McGlashan is deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo
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