New Zealand will take on West Indies in the first Test of the two-match series at Seddon Park in Hamilton on Thursday. The home team will be high on confidence after winning the three-match T20I series 2-0.
Kane Williamson and Trent Boult, who were rested for the T20I leg, will return in the whites. The Kiwis have been really good when it comes to performing in the longest format on their soil. And they will look forward to earn crucial points in order to excel in the ICC World Test Championship (WTC).
For the visitors, it will be about improving their record in New Zealand as they haven’t won a Test on these shores for 25 years now. In the last 12 Test matches, there have been four draws and eight losses for West Indies.
The wicket at Seddon Park in general favours the batsmen with some assistance for the seamers as well. New Zealand haven’t lost a Test match here since 2012, so the hosts will be favourites.
Head to Head:
Matches played: 47 | New Zealand won: 15 | West Indies won: 13 | Draw: 19
The regular wicket-keeper of New Zealand BJ Watling is not fit to play the first Test, and in his place, Will Young has been confirmed to make his debut. Young will open the batting alongside Tom Latham. When it comes to wicketkeeping duties, Tom Blundell, will take the gloves and move down the order.
NZ XI: Kane Williamson (c), Tom Latham, Will Young, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, Tom Blundell (wk), Mitchell Santner, Kyle Jamieson, Trent Boult, Neil Wagner, Tim Southee.
Darren Bravo is all set to return in the West Indies Test squad while Shamarh Brooks will replace Shai Hope, who’s been dropped due to his poor form.
WI XI: Jason Holder (c), John Campbell, Kraigg Brathwaite, Shamarh Brooks, Darren Bravo, Roston Chase, Jermaine Blackwood, Shane Dowrich (wk), Alzarri Joseph, Shannon Gabriel, Kemar Roach.