New Zealand v India, 4th ODI, Hamilton January 27, 2014

Expect similar starts, but will the end be different?


Match facts

Tuesday, January 28, 2014
Start time 1400 local (0100 GMT)

Big Picture

The series has produced three close finishes, but there has been a certain caginess to both the sides. New Zealand have been wary of the Indian batsmen, India have been wary of Indian bowlers.

New Zealand have been over-aiming in the last 15 overs, scoring massively in spurts but also losing wickets to end up with scores either par or slightly over par. India have won the tosses, but even on a slow pitch and despite having failed chasing of late, they have refused to bat first because they don't want their batsmen to be under a similar pressure of over-aiming for an Indian-bowlers-proof total. The New Zealand bowlers, like their batsmen, have been superb in the first 35, but it is the resilience of the Indian batting that took the first two matches close and tied the third to keep the series alive.

Coming back to Hamilton for the fourth ODI, expect a similar script. The pitch will be slow, which will become slower in the second innings, so New Zealand will want to bat first, set up a solid platform in the first 35, and then go big in the last 15. India haven't given any indication they will change their plan of chasing whatever their bowlers give them to chase despite the slowness of the Hamilton pitch. Except they will want more from their batsmen and their bowlers in the first 35 overs, New Zealand will have similar demands in the last 15.

India can't win the series now, but if they win both the matches they can keep their No. 1 ranking besides just leveling the series.

Form guide

New Zealand TWWLW (last five completed matches, most recent first)

In the spotlight

Brendon McCullum has captained the side superbly and refreshingly aggressively, but he hasn't yet come off with the bat. He is one of the explosive three - Corey Anderson and Luke Ronchi being the others - to take advantage of the platform set by the top four, but he hasn't been able to reprise the form he displayed in the series defeat against England last year when he scored three consecutive half-centuries. He will first want to avoid a hat-trick of ducks, and then do something about having scored just one fifty in his last 15 innings.

Suresh Raina's drought has been longer. He has scored just one fifty - that too against Zimbabwe - in his last 30 innings without any threat to his place in the side. The rope must be getting shorter.

Teams news

It will be interesting to see if New Zealand go back to Kyle Mils on the slower Seddon Park pitch after Hamish Bennett's showing at Eden Park. It's unlikely Correy Anderson will be rested yet with the series still alive.

New Zealand 1 Martin Guptill, 2 Jesse Ryder, 3 Kane Williamson, 4 Ross Taylor, 5 Brendon McCullum (capt.), 6 Corey Anderson, 7 Luke Ronchi (wk), 8 Nathan McCullum, 9. Kyle Mills/Hamish Bennett, 10 Tim Southee, 11 Mitchell McClenaghan

India are likely to retain the XI that tied the Auckland ODI. Suresh Raina is feeling good about his sore elbow.

India 1 Rohit Sharma, 2 Shikhar Dhawan, 3 Virat Kohli, 4 Ajinkya Rahane, 5 MS Dhoni (capt. & wk), 6 Suresh Raina, 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 R Ashwin, 9 Varun Aaron, 10 Mohammed Shami, 11 Bhuvneshwar Kumar

Pitch and conditions

R Ashwin expects the pitch to be quicker than six days ago, but the basic nature of the Hamilton surface is unlikely to change. There has been rain around, but it is unlikely to be a threat to the match.

Stats and trivia

  • The last 20 times that India have won the toss outside Asia, they have chosen to bowl.
  • New Zealand have never lost a home ODI after posting 300 batting first.
  • Corey Anderson has registered both a hundred and a five-for in ODIs after just 12 games, a new record. Greg Chappell, the previous incumbent of the record, took 16 games to achieve the feat.


"I used to be surprised initially when I was going away from India to see so many India fans. Now wherever we go even to England or Australia, it is lovely to see the hospitality we get in terms of fans. There was a situation in the Champions Trophy when we outnumbered the English fans in the final."
R Ashwin thanks the expat Indian

"That's cricket. Things like that happen. What we have done against West Indies and this series ... we haven't had many of those times. For a little while there, I guess everyone gets excited and under pressure, you fumble things and you miss chances. You are thinking of the outcome instead of the processes. Like i said before, if we keep going with the same mindset we have had for a while now, then in the next game, we shouldn't make those kind of mistakes."
Luke Ronchi's answer to whether New Zealand cracked under the pressure in Auckland

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • David on January 28, 2014, 1:14 GMT

    @ Nampally wrote "Kohli, with the best batting average in the ODI's...Ashwin & Jadeja the top spinners… Rohit- one of the 3 "Double Centurion" in ODI's, Dhawan as the prolific ODI bat."

    Rubbish. Complete Rubbish. Despite his dip in form, Amla still has a higher average than Kohli. Furthermore, Narine & Herath are higher ranked ODI spinners than Ashwin and Jadega. Rohit may have scored a double, but that was in Ind, on a dead flat track. He is a complete failure outside of India, as is Dhawan, as non-prolific batsman as one could see outside Ind. Notably, he has been dropped.

    Facts are facts. Get yours right.

  • Jo on January 28, 2014, 0:54 GMT

    Binny is capable replacement for Raina... with additional benefit, as he can bt anywhere in the top 7 and make impact. Bowling... as good as or complementing Raina... I kind of see the grip is loosing on Raina... it backfires to cry on silly things lik batting 4th or 5th or 6th for that matter... His experiment and adamant stance cant help even religious support from Captain... Good shuffle.. if not for this match... atleast for the long run...

  • Raja Ali on January 28, 2014, 0:46 GMT

    I want to predict on thing. I am 90% sure these both matches will be won by India. Either very Easily or with some thrill. But it is for sure India will win. Pattern: NZ NZ Tie IND IND. 10% chance of upset.

  • Sushant on January 28, 2014, 0:46 GMT

    very good selection for odi # 4. too good. hope this will shut down all arguments.

  • urmila on January 28, 2014, 0:44 GMT

    Finally, Dhoni is willing to challenge by making good changes in the batting line up and also willing to bat first.Hope and pray that they come up with a win today to stay alive in the competition.

  • Dummy4 on January 28, 2014, 0:39 GMT

    What a looser Team India is when playing outside their comfort zone , I meant outside Sub continent - They, Opposition and every body knows they are scared of loosing if they allow opposition to bat 2nd. Irrespective they are loosing any way!

  • MOHAN on January 28, 2014, 0:36 GMT

    @silentassassin_88 are you mad Dhoni is not blaming that he is short of bowlers,but his bowlers are not doing well.There is no difference of having 5 or 6 or even 11 bowlers in the team if they all go for 7 or 8 per over. Raina is scoring 30's with a strike rate of above 100 which is more important, better than rohit and rahane . your comment claims that you are against raina, dont be biased.I am not supporting him but i am saying that no other player can do that in the absence of raina.dont say that binny can score like him, he cant even play in indian conditions. And more over what Dhoni can do with that kind of bowlers, he cant go and bowl alone like what he is doing in batting . with this kind of bowlers even god(not sachin) cant set an aggressive field set. Don't ever say that he is fearful,l your son will laugh at you.You cant find a better captain, we need to find atleast average bowlers to solve our problems.

  • Allan on January 28, 2014, 0:28 GMT

    In the article: "India are likely to retain the XI that tied the Auckland ODI. Suresh Raina is feeling good about his sore elbow." And with that all of us are feel SORE about his good elbow.

  • Dummy on January 28, 2014, 0:26 GMT

    Please guys if india is not performing that doesnt means u will gv opinions on them. U r ntn but a public. Every body has good ot bad times. If indians are bad then i ask your country to go above us. If we are flat pitch bullies then why cant your country beat us on that flat pitch. We are awsome in our conditions. So u guys are jealous of that.

  • ajith on January 28, 2014, 0:13 GMT

    I am gonna stick my neck out and say India will win the next two. Also thanks for the SL posters and their ilk for the funny comments. Keep going guys, till you realise you are just making a spectacle of yourselves.