India vs New Zealand, 1st ODI, Preview: Hosts Begin as Massive Favourites for Opener in Mumbai
New Delhi: India will take on New Zealand in the first match of the three-match ODI series on Sunday (October 22). The game will be played at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Fresh from a 5-0 ODI series win in Sri Lanka and a 4-1 win at home against Australia, India will go in as huge favourites for this upcoming battle against the Kiwis. India will also like to make strides in getting back the number one ODI ranking from South Africa.
Banking on settled batting and bowling combinations with most of the columns ticked, the hosts appear to be too well- groomed a unit for the comfort of the visitors. Although India suffered a resounding loss to South Africa on a belter of a track at this very venue three seasons ago, they went on to win three series on the trot in their backyard and are now a force to reckon with in the upcoming series.
In fact, since surrendering to Australia back in 2009-10, India have lost only to Pakistan (2012) and South Africa in 16 bilateral rubbers, a clear indication of how dominant they have been in familiar conditions.
If they continue to fire with the same intensity, it would be difficult for New Zealand to contain the home team on a Wankhede track, which is expected to provide the ideal pace and bounce for the batsmen to go for the shots. (With PTI inputs)