New Zealand bowl first against Pakistan

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Shukriya Pakistan

The series offers a final chance for both sides to fine-tune before the World Cup begins on February 14.

New Zealand have made four changes to the side that completed a 4-2 series win over Sri Lanka on the same wicket two days ago.

Captain Brendon McCullum returns along with Nathan McCullum, Adam Milne and Trent Boult, replacing Kane Williamson, Daniel Vettori, Tim Southee and Mitchell McClenaghan.

Pakistan have not played a one-dayer since a tied series against New Zealand before Christmas in the United Arab Emirates, but captain Misbah-ul Haq felt they had acclimatised well in two warm-up games this week against a New Zealand XI.

“We’ve had a chance to get used to the conditions and I think we’re ready for this game,” he said.

The Pakistan side includes all-rounder Haris Sohail who claimed he was woken by a ghost in his hotel room when the team were training in Christchurch last weekend.

Teams:

New Zealand – Martin Guptill, Brendon McCullum (capt), Tom Latham, Ross Taylor, Grant Elliott, Corey Anderson, Luke Ronchi, Nathan McCullum, Kyle Mills, Adam Milne, Trent Boult.

Pakistan – Mohammad Hafeez, Ahmed Shehzad, Younis Khan, Misbah-ul Haq (capt), Haris Sohail, Umar Akmal, Sarfraz Ahmed, Shahid Afridi, Bilawal Bhatti, Ehsan Adil, Mohammad Irfan.

Toss: New Zealand

Umpires: Chris Gaffaney (NZL), Michael Gough (ENG)

TV umpire: Rod Tucker (AUS)

Match referee: Javagal Srinath (IND)

-AFP

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