New Zealand vs India 4th T20 Preview: Depleted Kiwis Look For a Win, As India Eyes Experiment

India won the third T20I against New Zealand in the Super Over to win their maiden T20I series against the Kiwis on their home soil. Rohit Sharma smacked two sixes in the final two balls to help India chase down 18 required to win in the Super Over. This was after New Zealand, on the back of Kane Williamson’s 95 ended on 179 for 6 after their 20 overs. The New Zealand vs India 4th T20I will now be played at Wellington, with the Kiwis looking to salvage pride by winning the final two games. However, injuries are a big concern before the Kane Williamson-led side ahead of the fourth T20I.

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Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson and Matt Henry are all not part of the squad as all three are battling injuries. This has made their bowling attack look very bleak with all of the workload on Tim Southee’s shoulders. Key spinners Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner also have not been consistently delivering for the Kiwis. Though their batsmen are in good form, they failed to win the last game after nerves got the better of them in Hamilton. The Kiwis looked set to win with Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor, their two most experienced batters at the wicket, but Mohammad Shami dismissed both of them to swing the match India’s way.

Also Read: New Zealand vs India 3rd T20I

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With injuries and players not performing, the Kiwis need to figure out their ideal playing combination in the final to games, to give themselves the best chance to win both the games. Colin de Grandohhome who failed in three straight games against India has been benched for the final two games. Either of Tom Bruce or Daryl Mitchell might replace him in the XI. The rest of the team might be the same as what it was in the final two games. Thus a win is imperative for the Kiwis in the final two games if they are to avoid a whitewash. 

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The final two games also give the Indian thinktank to try out the benched players. Rishabh Pant, Sanju Samson, Navdeep Saini and Kuldeep Yadav are yet to get a game in the series so far. Indian skipper Virat Kohli has also hinted at a few changes saying that the benched players deserved to get some game time. It will be interesting to see as to how many changes does India make in their final two games, keeping in mind that this is the experimental phase before the World T20 later this year in Australia. 

As far as the playing conditions for the fourth game is concerned, there are 10% chances of rain in Wellington. Thus, we should expect a complete match. The temperature will hover between 18°C to 20°C at the game venue. The pitches used in this stadium are drop-in decks and are batting friendly. Generally, the drop-in pitches have hard surfaces, thus, hit-the-deck-hard pacers should get some assistance in the game. The boundary size of the Westpac Stadium is not very large and a high-scoring contest might be on the cards. Out of 12 T20Is so far at the venue, seven have been won by the team batting second.

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New Zealand: Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Kane Williamson(c), Tim Seifert(w), Ross Taylor, Daryl Mitchell, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Blair Tickner, Scott Kuggeleijn, Hamish Bennett, Blair Tickner, Tom Bruce

India: Rohit Sharma, Lokesh Rahul, Virat Kohli(c), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant(w), Washington Sundar, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal, Sanju Samson, Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini, Kuldeep Yadav, Shivam Dube

Meanwhile, here are the key stats ahead of the New Zealand vs India 4th T20I

1) Kane Williamson is the first captain to post nine innings of 50-plus in T20Is.

2) Rohit Sharma has become the fourth Indian opening batsman after Virender Sehwag (15758), Sachin Tendulkar (15335) and Sunil Gavaskar (12258) to amass 10,000 runs in international cricket – his tally being 10117 (ave 50.33) in 219 innings.

3) Virat Kohli, with 1126 runs at an average of 45.04 in 34 innings, has become the leading run-scorer as captain for India, eclipsing the Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s tally of 1112 (ave 37.06) in 62 innings.

4) India have now won 4, lost 4, in the 8 matches between the two countries in New Zealand. 

5) This was India’s second win in a Super Over after a tied game.

6) For the first time, India have won three consecutive matches against New Zealand in T20Is.

Also Read: Leading Goal Scorers in Every Playing Position

This is the Dream XI Predicted team for the New Zealand vs India 4th T20I

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