AUS v NZ 3rd ODI, Preview: Hosts eye clean sweep against scratchy Kiwis
Published - Dec 8, 2016 3:14 pm | Updated - Dec 8, 2016 3:14 pm
The Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) is all set to host the final ODI of the 3-match Chappell-Hadlee Trophy. The hosts Australia have won the series already with an unassailable 2-0 lead. The Aussies will surely have a clean sweep on their mind. They have had pretty disastrous series prior to this. A clean sweep could well do a world of good for the World Champions.
The visiting New Zealand, on the other hand, will have pride at stake. They looked edgy back in India but came back strong against Pakistan in the home Test series and now they find themselves facing the gun barrel in Australia. The first two ODIs saw Australia notch up comprehensive victories. They have been ticking the 300-run mark at a regular basis. With the batsmen in supreme touch, the Aussies look clear favorites to win the match.
For the Kiwis, skipper Kane Williamson has come up good so far. Martin Guptill, at the top of the order, has been getting brisk starts. However, he has found no support from his opening partner yet.
Australia have their noses ahead by a large margin. Aaron Finch has been struggling at the top order. He might still get another chance despite Usman Khawaja waiting in the wings. David Warner and Steve Smith have tons under their belt. The success mantra for the Aussies has been their power-packed middle order. Albeit inexperienced, they have been plundering runs.
Travis Head has chipped in with back to back fifties. Mitchell Marsh showed some power hitting in the last game and Matthew Wade has given glimpses of his brute force as well. The hosts might get tempted to rest their premier bowler Mitchell Starc considering the long season ahead. Glenn Maxwell has a good chance of being drafted in at the expense of George Bailey.
The New Zealand team has their pride at stake to play for. Jimmy Neesham, who had performed decently with bat and ball for the Kiwis in first 2 ODIs, might miss out on the action. The all-rounder suffered a blow to his arm by a Starc delivery in the last match. Henry Nicholls can be the one filling in.
Lockie Ferguson, who made his debut in the first ODI, might get back to the action. Matt Henry is likely to make way for the pacer Lockie who ticks 150 plus at consistent basis.
David Warner, Aaron Finch, Steve Smith (C), Glenn Maxwell, Travis Head, Mitchell Marsh, Matthew Wade (wk), James Faulkner, Adam Zampa, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood.
Tom Latham, Martin Guptill, Kane Williamson (C), Henry Nicholls/Jimmy Neesham, BJ Watling (wk), Colin Munro, Mitchell Santner, Colin de Grandhomme, Lockie Ferguson, Tim Southee, Trent Boult
- MCG is the same venue that hosted the finals of the ICC World Cup 2015 between the two countries
- Aaron Finch averages over 50 at the venue with 412 runs to his name in 8 innings
- David Warner has a poor record at the MCG with an average of only 21.75 in 8 innings