Rare phenomena may take place if India gets triumphed by New Zealand again in the upcoming 2nd ODI at the MCA Stadium, Pune. The victory scored by New Zealand wasn’t something that was unanticipated but, in general sense, India was expected to win.
The scene in Mumbai, after Virat Kohli’s century and an impressive bowling show from the new ball bowlers, indicated that India was on their path to securing a 1-0 lead in the three-match series. But, as it happened, the Taylor-Latham sprung a surprise and put New Zealand just on the verge of a series win.
The last time India lost an ODI series at home was almost two years ago, against South Africa, in 2015/16 (India lost the five-match ODI series 2-3). Any possibility of India’s flawless record since then coming to a halt cannot be ruled out, as New Zealand have already proved their potential.
On the other side, India will not be bogged down by the loss in Mumbai. Kohli & Co will retaliate with full force and try to level the series and take the decider to the final fixture scheduled at the Green Park Stadium, Kanpur.
Spin duo look to fight back
The spin duo of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal had a rare flop day. Only a single wicket in 20 overs is what they managed. The sweeping approach from the Kiwis was highly successful, and the two youngsters will be expected to come up with some tactics to deal with the antidote which New Zealand have developed to deal with them.
Batting was underwhelming in the previous as well. The middle-order flopped, and the openers did not look in rhythm, especially Rohit Sharma whose well-documented problem against left-arm fast bowlers was once again on display.
Team combination is unlikely to change which means Dinesh Kartik will get to play another game. The Tamil Nadu star did a decent job with Virat Kohli, but on a personal note, it was a forgettable outing for him.
Top order prepares to tackle India’s pace
Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar had a good time with the new ball. Their efficient use of swing and knuckleballs was troublesome for the Kiwi top order, and it showed in the fact that Colin Munro, Martin Guptill, and Kane Williamson all failed to put up an impressive figure on the scoreboard.
New Zealand will also not shuffle with their line-up. The only change anticipated is the inclusion of leg-spinner Ish Sodhi who could be useful on the Pune wickets which offers better spin support.
More pleasant weather brings relief
The venue has changed, and the players are very relieved. Not because it has something to go with the form of track records but because of the lower humidity level. The weather condition in Mumbai was very, very unpleasant.
The Blackcaps had their ice bags out just five overs into the first innings, and it can be said with assurance that the previous game was the most challenging to play – physically – in recent times.
India will seek to save the series. So, naturally, we can expect a tougher show which would have no room for any mistakes and errors.
On the other hand, New Zealand will be mighty excited to nail down India once again and script a series win. A victory on Wednesday would be a sweet revenge on the Indian side who won the last bilateral ODI contest 3-2 (5-match series).
Both the side have a lot at stakes quite evidently and concluding one favourite seems like a highly difficult to do. Therefore, it would better to just go with a 50-50 probability for the sake of respect for both the sides.