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Sports News

Feb 13, 2020
12:53PM

Warm-Up Game: Opening gambit lone spinner on focus as India meet steady NZ XI

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Team India will focus on clarity on opening combination and a call on whether Ravichandran Ashwin's variations can trump Ravindra Jadeja's all-round skill-sets in their three-day warm-up game against New Zealand XI starting in Hamilton tomorrow. The match will start at 03.30 a.m. (IST).

After the harsh reality check of 0-3 drubbing in the just-concluded One-Day International series, a red-ball warm-up game will be the most welcome distraction for Virat Kohli and his men as a precursor to the two-match Test series starting next week.

India could not have asked for a better practice game as the opposition team is full of New Zealand senior and A team players, including leg-spinner Ish Sodhi, all-rounder Jimmy Neesham and wicketkeeper Tim Seifert, in its ranks. The inclusion of first team white ball pacers Scott Kuggeliejn and Blair Tickner will be the kind of test which both Prithvi Shaw and Shubman Gill will relish as they make a case for their inclusion in the playing XI for the first Test starting in Wellington on 21st of February.

A flat track like the one at Seddon Park will also be a test for the two frontline spinners with Ashwin and Jadeja getting a chance to test the likes of Daryl Mitchell, Tom Bruce and Seifert in action.

However, this warm-up game promises to be different as India are looking to get their combination right for the Test series which is also a part of World Test Championship.

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