India wins toss, bowls in 2nd test vs. New Zealand
WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni continued his magical record with the toss, calling correctly and asking New Zealand to bat on the opening day of the second cricket test at the Basin Reserve on Friday.
Dhoni has won all seven of his tosses in New Zealand this summer — five in the one-day series which New Zealand won 4-0 with one-match tied and again in the first test at Auckland which New Zealand won by 40 runs. In total, the India captain has won the toss in 11 of his team’s last 12 matches.
New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum said “it’s not working out with the toss but it’s a good wicket. It does look green but we have played here before and the wicket has quickened up on days two and three.”
India named an unchanged side for the match while New Zealand made two changes to the lineup that won at Eden Park.
Batsman Tom Latham and allrounder Jimmy Neesham were named by New Zealand to make their test debuts. Latham replaces Ross Taylor, whose wife is expecting their second child, and Neesham takes the place of legspinner Ish Sodhi, giving New Zealand five seam bowlers.
Dhoni said India did not have the luxury of a seam bowling allrounder which would allow it to bolster its bowling strength.
“It looks like a wicket that will favor the fast bowlers initially,” Dhoni said. “On the second, third and fourth days it should be good for batting.
“We’re playing with the same squad. At times we have to look at whether we can play with four seamers but lower-order batsmen also have to stand there with the bat and score runs. That’s also a factor when you start thinking about four seamers.
“We don’t really have the luxury of having a seaming allrounder so we’re going with the same squad.”
New Zealand is looking to conclude a successful summer in which it won its test, one-day and Twenty20 series against West Indies and its one-day series against India.
New Zealand: Peter Fulton, Hamish Rutherford, Kane Williamson, Brendon McCullum (captain), Tom Latham, Corey Anderson, BJ Watling, Tim Southee, Jimmy Neesham, Neil Wagner, Trent Boult.
India: Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Ravindra Jadeja, Zaheer Khan, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma.