India arrives at Wankhede with hopes of a series win against the defiant Kiwis
After a closely fought draw in Kanpur against the Blackcaps, India will be eyeing a win to wrap up the series that would go a long way in catapulting them to the top of the rankings in the WTC 2021-23.
Despite having 30 points in their kitty, India is in the third position of the points table with two wins and two draws and a win percentage of 50. The defending champions, New Zealand are still to secure a win in the ongoing edition of the contest with 4 points in their repertoire and a percentage of 33.33.
India will be buoyed by the return of their skipper, Virat Kohli who will be leading the contingency in the hope of salvaging a win after a captivating draw in Kanpur.
New Zealand skipper, Kane Williamson will be coming to this contest with the hope of securing their first victory as the Kiwis had loads of positives to take away from the opening Test match.
India will be faced with a conundrum of whom to replace as Virat Kohli makes a comeback to the national team after a much deserved break.
Shreyas Iyer was in impeccable form in the last game that would boost the hopes a better display in the middle order.
With Wriddhimaan Saha injured, former Royal Challengers Bangalore wicket-keeper Srikar Bharat may win his first Test cap. He was impeccable with the gloves as he affected three dismissals in the first Test match, coming on as a sub.
Ishant Sharma will have a lot to contemplate after the opening Test. With Prasidh Krishna on his trail, the Indian team management may have a thought or two about tinkering with the bowling line-up to shake things up.
New Zealand will most likely resort to the same line-up that wrung out an emphatic stalemate at the end of the Kanpur affair. Despite two consecutive batting collapses after decent starts, Williamson will ask his team to focus on bolstering the middle-order.
The crux of the Kiwi batting will revolve around their skipper, Kane and seasoned campaigner, Ross Taylor whose exploits against the hosts have so far been pretty notable.
India vs New Zealand – 2nd Test match
Venue: Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai
Time: 9:30 AM IST
Head to head:
New Zealand: 13
Virat Kohli has averaged a fine 48.82 against New Zealand in the span of his glittering career as he has managed to rack up 830 runs from the 10 matches that he has played against the Kiwis.
Axar Patel has been a top performer for India at home as he has scalped a staggering 33 wickets at a bowling average of 11.24 that also features five fifers from the eight games that he has played in India.
Kyle Jamieson shares a special affection for India as out of his 52 wickets, he has bagged the highest number of scalps against the hosts with 22 in his repertoire. He has also bagged two fifers against the Indians.
The last time New Zealand played in Wankhede, India were beaten comprehensively by the might of iconic fast bowler, Richard Hadlee as he claimed 10 wickets in the game with 6 in the first and 4 in the second.
India: Virat Kohli (cap), Shubman Gill, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Shreyas Iyer, Ajinkya Rahane (vc), Shreyas Iyer, Wriddhimaan Saha (wk), Srikar Bharat (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Jayant Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Prasidh Krishna.
New Zealand: Kane Williamson (cap), Tom Blundell (wk), Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Glenn Phillips (wk), Rachin Ravindra, Mitchell Santner, Will Somerville, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Will Young, Neil Wagner.