New Zealand vs Pakistan , 1st Test Day 5, Preview, squads & tv Channels

Cricket News: New Zealand vs Pakistan , 1st Test Day 5, Preview, squads news & Pitch report

Preview:

While a consolation victory for Pakistan in the third and final T20I against hosts New Zealand has given them something to celebrate, a much tougher challenge awaits them as the two sides head into the whites. As for New Zealand, the switching of gears would be smoother, and the memory of a 2-0 victory over West Indies in the recently-concluded series would be fresh. The same, however, could not be stated for Pakistan, who last played the longest format in August in England where they lost 1-0 in a three-Test series.

Despite a trouble-riddled year, the Black Caps have won each of the 4 encounters they have played as they clean-swept India in the two-Test series before their successive innings-victory over West Indies. Bolstered by the presence of their skipper Kane Williamson – who missed the second Test on account of his paternity leave, their squad is nearly at its full strength as barring Colin de Grandhomme – ruled out due to stress-reaction to his right ankle – they are not missing out on any key player.

Pakistan, however, has been dealing with injuries one after another. In their skipper Babar Azam‘s absence – he broke his right thumb during practice and missed the T20I series in entirety – Mohammad Rizwan will be leading the side. The absentee problem for the touring party does not halt here as they do not have Imam-ul-Haq and Shadab Khan on their duties either due to different injuries.

While many of their Test-regulars in Shan Masood, Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Haris Sohail, Yasir Shah, and Mohammad Abbas resume action at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui, they will have to acclimatize themselves to the format as well as the testing conditions in this part of the world.

Having completed series wins over West Indies and India, a whitewash victory over Pakistan, who last won a Test in New Zealand in 2011, could well be their ticket to Lord’s.

Also Read: Australia vs India, 1st T20I Match, Preview, squads & tv Channels

Match Facts:

Match: New Zealand vs Pakistan
Series: Pakistan tour of New Zealand, 2020-21
Date: Saturday, December 26, 2020 – Wednesday, December 30, 2020
Time: 11:00 local / 11:00 GMT / 03:00 PST
Venue: Bay Oval, Mount Maunganui

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Weather and Pitch Conditions:

The only time Bay Oval hosted a Test match was during England’s tour in 2019 when New Zealand won by an innings and 65 runs. The track, as is the case with all the venues in the country, has sufficient assistance for the pacers. Given New Zealand’s lethal pace battery, a green top should not be surprising to see.

Today’s Playing XI:

New Zealand:

Tom Latham, Tom Blundell, Kane Williamson (c), Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling (wk), Mitchell Santner, Kyle Jamieson, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, Trent Boult

Pakistan:

Shan Masood, Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Fawad Alam, Haris Sohail, Mohammad Rizwan (c & wk), Faheem Ashraf, Yasir Shah, Mohammad Abbas, Shaheen Afridi, Naseem Shah

 

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