Pressure on New Zealand to level series against India

March 7th, 2009 - 7:08 pm ICT by IANS  

Christchurch, March 7 (IANS) Brimming with confidence, India will be looking to extend their 1-0 lead in the third One-day international against New Zealand here Sunday.
And, with the second ODI rained out, the pressure will be on the hosts to level the series here at the AMI Stadium. For India, a win will make sure that they don’t lose the five-match series and will also be near sniffing distance of a series win.

So, a more is at stake for New Zealand than for India.

Indian batsman Virender Sehwag has been in brilliant form with two half-centuries in his kitty and will be looking to give the visitors a good start on Sunday.

He has become such a terror for the Black Caps bowlers that captain Daniel Vettori said “giving width to Sehwag is almost unforgivable and we did that on a number of occasions.”

But if the New Zealand bowlers feel that getting rid of Sehwag early on in the innings will ease their task, they are mistaken because all the Indian batsmen are in fine form. Runs have been flowing freely from the blades of Sachin Tendulkar, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Suresh Raina.

The good form of the batsman the destructive new ball pair of Ishant Sharma and Zaheer Khan will compound the problems of the New Zealand team. Though Ishant missed the last two ODI’s due to a shoulder injury, he might return Sunday to bolster India’s attack. But even in Ishant’s absence, Praveen Kumar did a good job with Zaheer to rock the New Zealand batting.

Teams (from):

India: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina, Yusuf Pathan, Harbhajan Singh, Praveen Kumar, Zaheer Khan, Munaf Patel, Rohit Sharma, Pargyan Ojha, Ishant Sharma

New Zealand: Daniel Vettori (captain), Ian Butler, Martin Guptill, Brendon McCullum, Peter McGlashan, Iain O’Brien, Jacob Oram, Jesse Ryder, Ross Taylor, Grant Ellio, Kyle Mills, Neil Broom, Jeetan Patel

Umpires: Rudi Koertzen and Gary Baxter

Third umpire: Evan Watkin

Match referee: Ranjan Madugalle

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