New Zealand will take on Pakistan in the second T20I in 3-matches T20I series. Kiwis have taken a 1-0 lead in the series after outperforming the visitors by 5 wickets in the opening fixture.
Match Timings: Dec 20, 11:30 AM IST
New Zealand would enter Seddon Park with a 1-0 lead, and hosts will now welcome its main skipper Kane Williamson after serving the paternity leave. Michell Santner won his first match as a New Zealand skipper, riding on Seifert’s gritty half-century on Friday. Kiwi pace-attack knocked out Pakistani top-order to leave them 39/5. Duffy picked a 4-wickets haul, and Kuggeleijn bagged three to restrict Pakistan to 153. Kiwis lost two wickets early, and Pakistan troubled its batting, but Seifert’s 43-balls 57 helped New Zealand to cross the line with 8 balls spare.
New Zealand are now a better side after including some key players in the final two T20Is. Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Kyle Jamieson, and Daryl Mitchell will join the squad. Duffy might be retained after an impressive figure in the last game, and Boult-Southee will take the new ball. Kyle Jamieson has been excellent in home-summer, and he can replace Neesham. Ish Sidhi will be the only spinner as New Zealand rested Santner due to a heavy workload.
Chapman was in good touch in the previous game, scoring 34 off 20 balls, but Williamson can drop him and promote himself up in the order. Glenn Phillips scored a fabulous ton in the WI series, and Devon Conway also impressed in his debut series, scoring two blistering knocks at a strike rate of 160.61. Both batsmen will continue playing in their genuine positions. New Zealand has good strength in the bench, and Kane would try to wrap up the series to give young players chances in the final ODI. Kiwis will also play the two matches Test series, starting from December 26, and management wants its key players fresh.
Meanwhile, Pakistan fought hard, but top-order failure hurt them most. They can admire the late batting brilliance, which helped them to cross 150. Visitors lost six wickets on just 79, and from the worst situation, Shadab Khan and Faheem Ashraf batted very well. The captain led from the front with 32-balls 42, and Faheem provided the acceleration with 18-balls 31. Shaheen Afridi picked two wickets with the new ball, and it’s a great sign.
Pakistan has the best pace-attack, but batsmen have to score enough runs for them. Haris Rauf scalped three in his first match in New Zealand, and he can trouble with his pace in Seddon Park. Faheem Ashraf bowled very well, conceding just 18 in his spell, and it gives some relief to Pakistan to find the 6th bowling option. Pakistan can bounce back after forming the best team combination from the positives of the previous defeat. Pakistan can change its opening slot, and Abdullah Shafique might be tried with Haider Ali. Rizwan would be either demoted into the middle-order, or Shadab can recall Sarfaraz to replace him. In middle-order, Mohammed Hafeez will have a big responsibility with Shadab Khan. Pakistan has the ability to outclass Kiwis as they did on England tour after going down in the series.
Seddon Park is a good batting surface, and pacers can get early help from the pitch. The surface has enough runs, and we expect a high-scoring affair on Sunday.
The weather in Hamilton is partly cloudy, and the temperature on Friday will be around 26 degrees. There is no rain prediction on match-day.
Kane Williamson (c), Martin Guptill, Trent Boult, Devon Conway, Kyle Jamieson, Scott Kuggeleijn, Daryl Mitchell/Jimmy Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Tim Seifert, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee
Shadab Khan (c), Abdullah Shafique, Faheem Ashraf, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Imad Wasim, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Rizwan/Sarfaraz Ahmed (wk), Shaheen Shah Afridi, Wahab Riaz
In England series – M: 3, Runs: 155, SR: 176.14
Home T20I series – M: 3, Wickets: 6, Avg: 15.67
Previous outing – 29/3
WI series 2020 – Innings: 2, Runs: 130, SR: 224.14
Previous outing – 23 (18)
Home summer 2020 – 41 (29), 65 (37), 5 (4)