New Zealand v Pakistan 1st T20I Live and Highlights
New Zealand will look to end their barren run when they face Pakistan in the first T20 international at Auckland on Sunday, December 26. >
They have now gone winless in their last nine limited over games and are back home after a fruitless trip to the Indian subcontinent. Pakistan are just back after a disappointing duel against South Africa in which they lost both the T20 series and the One Day Internationals series before drawing both the Tests.mage>
As a reaction to the side’s disappointing performances in the limited overs format, the New Zealand selection panel have announced plenty of new faces in the probables list for the 2011 World Cup. The batting had a lot of problems in the series against India and the top order failed time and time again.
The good thing out of that series was the performance of James Franklin. He rescued the team with consistent performances in all the games that he played with contributions from different players to assist him.
A big blow for New Zealand would be the absence of Brendon McCullum. The wicket keeper batsman will be absent for the three match series and will surely be missed. While his wicket keeping duties can be replaced, New Zealand do not have a player to replace his explosive batting at the top of the order.
The good thing for New Zealand is that Pakistan have problems of their own. They were thrashed in today’s tour opener against Auckland, not an ideal preparation. They were dismissed for just 91 and Auckland reached the target with five wickets to spare. The Pakistani batsmen had no answer to Michael Bates, with the paceman picking up four wickets for just 11 runs.
Batting could be a problem for Pakistan in the series proper as well. New Zealand do not have an imposing bowling attack, but they do have medium pace bowlers who are well accustomed and well suited to the conditions. Those conditions could favor the Pakistani quickies as well, but they would be waging a lone battle if the batsmen do not support them.
The series should be close and both the teams would be desperate for a win.
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