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New Zealand vs Australia: Second ODI Preview
New Zealand and Australia go head to head in the second of three ODIs tomorrow morning in Napier.
New Zealand may have won the match, but it was Marcus Stoinis who stole the show as he decimated the Australian attack on his was to an unbeaten 146. The wounded Aussies will need to put the heartbreak behind them as they turn their attention to McLean Park – the eastern-most Test venue on the planet.
The next leg of the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy takes place in Napier this Thursday, and a win for the Black Caps will see them regain the title that they lost last year. There are plenty of other factors that will come into play: injuries to key players on both sides as well as the possibility of rain. It’s all shaping up quite nicely, let’s take a look at the teams below:
New Zealand vs Australia | Thursday 2 January | McLean Park, Napier | 02:30
To Win Match
New Zealand 1/1 | Tie 35/1 | Australia 82/100
The Black Caps will be desperate to wrap up the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy which they lost last season in Australia as their trans-Tasmanian neighbours strolled to a 3-0 win. Kane Williamson and his men have the ideal opportunity to do just that in what will likely be overcast conditions.
Said conditions won’t worry the New Zealanders too much, however, with the ball expected to swing in Napier. Trent Boult and Tim Southee – for so many years the strike duo for New Zealand – will be licking their lips at the prospect of a bit of lateral movement through the air; especially considering the fragility of the Australian top order at the moment.
Boult, Southee and Mitchell Santner tore through the top order before Stoinis got in and dragged the Aussies to within an inch of the finish line. Injury wise, the Black Caps will be without the services of Martin Guptill with a hamstring problem. Dean Brownlie has been called into the side as cover for the injured opener.
The loss of Guptill means that Williamson is going to have to step up to the plate along with the other two senior statesmen, Ross Taylor and Tom Latham. The trio are more than capable of delivering the goods against a strong Australian attack which will include Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood. If they assess the conditions early on, get their collective eye in and buckle down, scoring should become easier.
The Aussies – despite fielding a weakened a largely second-string batting line-up – will have been disappointed not to have made a better start in the Auckland ODI. Aaron Finch, Travis Head, Sean Marsh, Peter Handscomb and Glenn Maxwell all failed miserably with the bat and will need to step it up going into the second match of the series.
You simply can’t leave your team reeling at 67-6 and expect a lower order onslaught from the likes of Stoinis, James Faulkner and Pat Cummings to dig you out of a hole. Finch was superb during the Big Bash as were Head and Marsh – they need to start showing their wares more consistently in the national side if they’re to cement a place in Darren Lehmann’s plans.
On the bowling front, the Australians actually look pretty well-equipped to deal with the New Zealand batting line-up. Starc and Hazlewood are both world-class quicks while Faulkner’s endless variations make life difficult in the middle and latter stages of the innings.
Looking ahead, the top order simply has to get more runs on the board. The size of the ground suits guys like Finch down to the ground. If he gets his eye in, there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be able to clear the ropes with ease on the North Island’s East Coast.
Verdict: Australia 82/100
The Australian top order - despite the lack of David Warner and Steve Smith – are too good to fail twice in a row. Back them to level the three-match series up if the weather allows for a result to be achieved.
Value Bet: Ross Taylor to top score for New Zealand at 9/2
A bit of a left-field call here, but Taylor’s record at McLean Park speaks for itself. In 13 ODIs at the ground, the Wellington native has grabbed 710 runs at an average of 88.75. Big value here at 9/2 – get on!