About the Match
New Zealand and South Africa played out an engrossing four days of cricket only for the match to be thwarted by rain on the final day. What lies store for us in round two?
Second Test Match Preview
New Zealand has never done too well against the South Africans in test cricket and their dismal record suggests that they would look at the first match draw in favorable light. The task of maintaining parity or even trying to eke out a win though will be much more difficult this time around.
New Zealand will be without the services of the rejuvenated Ross Taylor and the leader of their bowling attack, Trent Boult. These are some serious shoes to fill and even though Tim Southee can be expected to do the job in place of Boult, we don’t think there is anyone of the quality of Toss Taylor in the New Zealand reserves.
Neil Broom is the replacement batsman and he definitely has the experience to come good but whether he will be able to stand up against a top-quality South African attack is the question.
Kane Williamson played a fantastic inning of 130 in the previous match to set up the test match for New Zealand. He will also know that he will need to play another such inning if New Zealand is to remain in contention for the duration of this match.
This New Zealand test team is looking slightly wobbly and could crumble against South Africa.
Dean Elgar carried the South African batting in the first test match and even though it was not pretty all the time, his methods were effective. There is no question about the quality that South Africa possesses in its ranks.
Elgar, Amla, du Plessis, Duminy, Bavuma and de Kock are world class players capable of breaking the game open on their own. Any one of them could come good but we feel that is time for Amla and du Plessis to score some big runs in this series.
These two are our picks for the batsmen most likely to score the most runs in the second test match.
The bowling attack is led by Philander and Morkel, both of whom will have very pleasant memories of playing in Wellington. They may not have the same amount of help that they may have expected this time but there should be still enough in the wicket to keep them interested.
Morkel looked good on his return to International cricket and we believe this will be the match where he shows that he is back to his best. Back Morkel to pick up the most wickets for South Africa in this match.
South Africa seems likely to field an unchanged eleven from last time around.
Pitch and Condition
New Zealand has forsaken their usual home conditions betting that they will be able to handle the spin better than South Africa. A pitch that is not the kind one experiences in Wellington usually is almost a surety and could lead to the spinners playing a much larger role than on previous occasions.
The batsmen might find run scoring a little tough on this sluggish pitch but should be able to capitalize once they have spent some time assessing the conditions.
New Zealand is playing without two of its best players against a side that will prey on every vulnerability on offer. Back South Africa To Win.