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Shirin Sadikot & Rajneesh Gupta in Mumbai 27 January 2014 - 05:09pm IST

Preview: New Zealand vs India - 4th ODI

Indian bowlers need to step up in support of batsmen

What

Fourth ODI of the five-match series between New Zealand and India

When

Tuesday, January 28, 2014, (14:00 local | 01:00 GMT | 06:30 IST)

Where

Seddon Park, Hamilton, New Zealand

The Teams

India

Although winless in the series so far, India will not be short of confidence. After going down fighting in the first two ODIs, they came back stronger in the third to hold on for a tie. The fact that India have come so close to winning each time is to the credit of the gradually improved batting performance. However, the same cannot be said about their bowlers, who have left the batsmen a bit too much to do each time.

MS Dhoni has won all tosses so far and inserted New Zealand in, possibly to allow his bowlers to bowl without the pressure of defending a total. Although it hasn’t worked so far, it is likely the Indian captain will continue with the strategy if he calls the coin correctly in Hamilton, hence putting more responsibility on the batsmen.

New Zealand

The hosts will be happy if the fourth ODI pans out the way the last three did. Batting first, putting a sizeable total on board and then restricting the Indian batsmen just enough, will give them a series win. However, the bowlers will be wary of the Indian batsmen who have regained their touch as the series has progressed. India’s lower-order assault in Auckland means the Kiwi bowlers will ensure not to let the hook off until the very end.

Key Players

India

The spinners were the key performers for India in the last match, with the ball and bat. On the Hamilton wicket, that is traditionally on the slower side, they will again play a crucial role. The primary job of R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja will be to maintain a stranglehold in the middle-overs, hence forcing the Kiwi batsmen to take more chances against the pacers in the death overs.

New Zealand

While the likes of Corey Anderson and Martin Guptill have hogged the spotlight with superlative performances, there’s one man who has silently gone about scoring fifties in all three matches. Without any flashiness, Kane Williamson is the top-scorer of the series so far with 213 runs, providing solidity to the Kiwi top-order, at No. 3. India must eye his wicket early to expose the middle-order.

Statistics

Matches at Hamilton

Mts

Won

Lost

NR

Won%

New Zealand

18

12

5

1

66.66

India

7

2

5

0

28.57

 

Result summary:

Won by side batting 1st

Won by side batting 2nd

NR

Overall (21)

8

12

1

Last 5 matches

3

2

0

 

 

 

 

Pace vs Spin

(last 5 matches)

 

Wkts

Avg

RPO

4W

Pace

58

32.41

5.82

2

Spin

13

50.00

5.03

1

 

Average first innings score

Overall (21)

234

Last 5 matches

281

 

Trivia

In last 20 consecutive ODIs outside the sub-continent Indian captains have opted to field first after winning the toss. India won 11 and lost 8 of those games, while one match was tied.

New Zealand have not lost more than two wickets at the end of 30th over in the three matches so far. The least India have lost at the same stage are four!

MS Dhoni needs 80 runs to complete 8000 runs in one-day internationals. He will become seventh Indian and 26th batsman in ODIs to accomplish this feat. Dhoni will be the fourth quickest in terms of innings to reach this mark after Sourav Ganguly (200), Sachin Tendulkar (210) and Brian Lara (211).

The Squads

India: M.S. Dhoni (Capt/wk), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Ambati Rayudu, Suresh Raina, R. Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Amit Mishra,  Ishwar Pandey, Stuart Binny, Varun Aaron.

New Zealand:  Brendon McCullum (capt/wk), Corey Anderson, Martin Guptill, Mitchell McClenaghan, Nathan McCullum, Kyle Mills, Hamish Bennett, James Neesham, Luke Ronchi, Jesse Ryder, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Kane Williamson.

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