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Pak-NZ 3rd ODI at Christchurch Saturday

By Haris Afzal on Friday, January 28, 2011 with 0 comments

CHRISTCURCH: The third One Day International (ODI) between New Zealand and Pakistan is scheduled to be played on Saturday at the AMI stadium, Christchurch.

New Zealand have a 1-0 lead in the series and Pakistan are still in the hunt of a series leveller as the washed out second game of the six-match series wooed their hopes of making a comeback.

Before the rain interruption at Queenstown, the Pakistani openers put up a good show in the face of bowling-friendly conditions. Ahmed Shehzad in particular made Tim Southee look like an ordinary bowler after his heroics in the first match and the hat-trick in the T20I at Auckland.

The start to the series has been a typical Pakistani one. They rose up to the expectations and gave the world of cricket a glimpse of their stumbling capabilities yet again.

The batting line-ups of both the teams are fragile, having the tendency to collapse like a house of cards. The Kiwi batsmen in this series, however, seem to have learned their lessons as they have looked like a resolute unit against the Pakistani bowlers ever since the start of the tour except that one collapse in the second innings of the first Test match, at Hamilton, that cost them the series.

The men in green on the other hand have a lot to think about. Except for the Test series, their batting form in the T20 series and the one ODI so far has been deplorable except for the consistent skipper, Misbah-ul-Haq.

New Zealand are continuing with their rotation policy and in the third match they are going to make considerable changes, Jesse Ryder and James Franklyn both have been rested, they will return to play for their domestic side, Jamie How, and, Luke Woodcock are going to replace them.

After the explosive innings of Jesse Ryder upfront in the first match, Jamie How, is going to open the batting with Martin Guptill, which makes things a little ambiguous about the roles of the two.

Being the senior of the two, Guptill, will have the immense responsibility to attack as well as keep the innings together for the team.

In another shocker the authorities have also decided to rest Daniel Vettori in this match and Ross Taylor will take the leading role, Kyle Mills, is likely to make a comeback.

Ross Taylor might toss the new ball in Hamish Bennett’s hands tomorrow in the absence of James Franklyn. His ability to hit the deck hard and extract bounce from the pitch along with good pace might well prove lethal for the vulnerable Pakistani upper order.

As far as this venue is concerned the Kiwis have an excellent record here winning three of every four matches they have played at the AMI stadium, Pakistan have lost all except one. The toss is going to be important as the teams batting second have a clear advantage but it is still unclear as to how the pitch and more importantly the ball is going to behave under floodlights.

There are chances of a few showers on the big day so we can only hope that we get to see a complete and uninterrupted competition.

Category: Sports News

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