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Wednesday, August 05, 2009

India vs New Zealand 2nd ODI 2009: Preview, Live Score

(This entry was originally published on Thursday, March 5th, 2009)

Cricket world is struck by Lahore’s terror attack on Sri Lankan cricket team and ICC match officials which has triggered an unprecedented phase that cricket has never gone through. Well, after all these things, life needs to be continued and cricket is still there to entertain you as India is going to face host New Zealand in the second ODI of the five-match ODI series at the Westpac Stadium, Wellington on 6 March 2009. After the convincing victory in the first ODI in Napier, India is now looking to double their lead in the series, while the home side is desperate to bounce back by winning the second one day international.

Match: New Zealand vs India, Second ODI 2009

Date: 6 March 2009

Venue: Westpac Stadium, Wellington, New Zealand

Time: Local Time 14:00 (01:00 GMT)

Live TV: Sony Set Max, DD Sports

Well, India made a steady come back in the first ODI, brushing aside the double blows that they suffered in the two-match Twenty20 series which New Zealand won by 2-0. The defeats pulled India back into the reality and the result was shown in the first ODI. Indian team has had a very successful tour in Sri Lankan recently as they defeated the home side by 4-1 in the ODI series, with the only defeat coming in the final ODI.

It is in now pretty much certain that Indian team retained the confidence that they lost (if any) during the Twent20 series. India has got an inspirational captain in Mahendra Singh Dhoni who has positive approach towards the game and always thinks logically without letting his players feel complacency. However, it is true that Dhoni has got a bunch of talented cricketers who are always in the race to cement their place in the squad, making them try to play their best in every game. Moreover, the captain’s knock from Dhoni in the first match has now become a great source of inspiration for the team. No doubt, his coming in at no. 3 in the batting order was a big surprise for the New Zealand team who seemed unaware of what Dhoni’s approach. They might have been in a dilemma whether the Indian captain would start hitting the ball around the field or carry through till the end. That trick worked pretty well for the visiting side who could successfully capitalize on a solid start initiated by opener Virender Sehwag thanks to his hard-hitting batting display.

India can surprise the oppositions with this kind of shuffle in the batting line up sometime, but I think, it would be better if Dhoni bats at no. 6 in most of the games because of few reasons. First of all, Dhoni has developed an excellent skill of batting under pressure and carry on the innings till the end, taking huge responsibility on his shoulder which is very important when you are chasing. Stating that, I am not underrating the players like Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina or Gautam Gambhir. All of them are excellent hitters and most importantly, perfect match winners. Dhoni can also hit the ball very hard and knows very well how to thrash the opposition bowling, but what he also possesses is that he can rotate the strike continuously, even when under pressure. There is no doubt, Dhoni’s versatility as a batsman is an added advantage for India.

So, I think, the no. 3 spot should be given to someone among Gautam Gambhir, Suresh Raina and Yuvraj Singh. Here, I would prefer Gambhir for the no. 3 spot because he is a natural opener and he should be given more chance to face the ball before it becomes old. There is less likely to see any change as far as Indian squad in concerned. Praveen Kumar picked up a two early wickets in the first match, putting the New Zealand team under pressure, while Zaheer Khan was also impressive with the ball. Munaf Patel was not successful, but India would not take any risk by playing injured Ishant Sharma until he gets over the injury fully. Harbhajan Singh was the most successful among the Indian bowlers in the first match, picking up highest three wickets, all of those coming in one over. In fact, I would say that over was the turning point of the match, as New Zealand’s last hope was ended after that excellent over. Yusuf Pathan will play as the second spinner in the squad and his leg spin would bring a much-needed variation in the squad.

New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori has vowed that his side would bounce back in the second ODI and that is what, the home fans are looking for at this moment. However, New Zealand might miss their in-form wicketkeeper batsman Brendon McCullum as he picked up a thumb injury while keeping during the first ODI.

There is a possibility that McCullum would play as a specialist batsman. In that case, Peter McGlashan will be seen behind the wicket and Neil Broom will be excluded from the squad. If McCullum does not play even as a batsman, Martin Guptill will move up the order to open the New Zealand innings along with Jesse Ryder. Kyle Mill returned in the first match after getting over his injury, but had a disastrous game. However, his excellent bowling in Australia tour would help him retain a place in the final eleven. However, I think, Tim Southee should be included in the second match squad, because he showed excellent prospect in Australia and he really deserves a place in the second match. Now, the question comes that who will make way for Southee. Well, I think, New Zealand pacers were not impressive at all in the first ODI and it would not be very hard to keep someone out for the second ODI to include Southee. However, Captain Daniel Vettori will have to play a big role with his left arm spin if New Zealand is to level the series in Wellington.

The wicket of Westpac Stadium seems to be slow and offer less help to the seam bowlers. So, Vettori and Harbhajan might get some help from the wicket and they are expected to play the big part for their respective teams in the second match. Rain has been forecast for the second match too and you can see another rain-curtailed match tomorrow.

Online Live Score and Updates

Here, I am giving some website name from where you can get the live score and updates of the match:

Cricinfo

Sify sports

action8cricket

cricketnext

Headlinesindia.com

CRICBUZZ

123INDIA.COM

Cricket365

thatscricket

India seems to be favorite for the second match, but New Zealand can come out stronger in the second match. In fact, both sides have some match winner who can steal the show single-handedly for their side. So, you can expect an exciting match between India and New Zealand tomorrow.

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