Preview - IND vs NZ - 1st ODI.

New Zealand would want to start afresh ahead of the ODI series. The fact they played an ODI around 250 days ago and 13,000 km far from Dharamsala best describes their need to take a fresh start. Apart from these numbers, there is one name which they might miss in this series. Brendon McCullum was still leading the side the last time they played an ODI against Australia in Hamilton. This will be Kane Williamson's first ODI series for New Zealand as full-time captain.
But it is easier said than done. They are playing against India in India. A situation which recently handed them a 3-0 whitewash in the test series.
Playing without their key players such as Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Shikhar Dhawan, Lokesh Rahul, Mohammad Shami etc., things are not that sorted for India as well. The home team is likely to play with a bunch of youngsters who will be guided by the likes of captain MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane.
Ajinkya Rahane is all set to open the batting with Rohit Sharma. Having cemented his place in the test side, the 28-year old right-hand batsman must be looking to do the same at the top of the order in the ODI side as well. With Virat Kohli at No. 3, India have a solid top order. With Suresh Raina out of the first ODI due to viral fever, the following batsmen in Manish Pandey and Kedhar Jadhav might be short on experience but not on potential. Both have played seven ODIs and have a century each to their name.
Axar Patel will bat at No. 7 and play the all-rounder's role. Amit Mishra will be his senior pro in the spin division. To bolster the bowling line-up, India is likely to pick all three pacers in Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah and Dhawal Kulkarni. Three novices in Hardik Pandya, Mandeep Singh and  Jayant Yadav are likely to warm the bench, at least for the first match.

Manish Pandey will be the batsman to watch out for.
After scoring three half-centuries in the test series, Tom Latham is likely to partner Martin Guptill at the top of the order for New Zealand. Their Top 4 will remain same with Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor batting at No. 3 and 4 respectively. Having suffered an injury, Corey Anderson was selected in this series only for his batting credentials. He, along with James Neesham will take care of the middle order. On their day, both of them can prove to be a nightmare for the bowlers.
Luke Ronchi should be preferred over BJ Watling for the wicket-keeper's spot. Both the spinners in Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi are likely to play in the spin-friendly Indian conditions. Two out of Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Matt Henry and Doug Bracewell will feature in the playing eleven. Boult might be rested for he appeared in all the three test matches and Henry might get the edge over Bracewell because of his impressive bowling in the test series.
New Zealand defeated India in Dharamsala earlier this year during the ICC World Twenty20 2016 on the back of Santner and Sodhi. Williamson would want his front line spinners to come good yet again.


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