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Australia brings in Khawaja for second ODI

New Zealand aims to wrap up series in Wellington after big win in opening game

Australia brings in Khawaja for second ODI  - Cricket News
New Zealand won the first ODI by 159 runs
Usman Khawaja has been recalled to the Australian side for the second One-Day International on Saturday (February 6) as the world champion side fights to recover from its 159-run defeat and stay alive in the three-match series against New Zealand.

New Zealand, meanwhile, will go to the Westpac Stadium, where it has lost only eight of 26 ODIs, hoping to wrap up the series and snap a remarkable run by Australia, which has won its last six ODI series and the World Cup over the past two years.

Shaun Marsh was preferred to Khawaja in the team defeated in Auckland on Wednesday. Khawaja has played only three games for the Australian ODI side, the last against West Indies in 2013. However, in recent times, he has been in hot form – he had centuries in three consecutive Tests against New Zealand and West Indies late last year, as well as in the Big Bash League.  

Australia has also brought in Adam Zampa, the legspinner, for the second round in Wellington to replace injured quick James Faulkner. Marcus Stonis, who was called up to the squad following Faulkner's injury, will have to wait to be in the playing XI. 

Khawaja downplayed his run of form in Tests, saying the ODIs in New Zealand conditions were a new challenge.

"The past is done. I'm feeling really good right now but that doesn't mean I'm going to contribute runs," he said after surveying the wicket at Westpac Stadium on Friday. "New Zealand are very good in their conditions, as we are at home. I think they'll come hard again. They're going to try and win this series 2-0."

He however said that Australia had already put the disappointment of the first ODI behind them. “We just had an off-day the other day. It happens no matter who you are, you don't have to worry about that. We're a good enough team if we do the basics right,” he said.

While it was the batsmen who laid base for New Zealand’s victory by posting 307 in the opener, the bowlers did an appreciable job in containing a strong batting Australian line-up to 148. And at the head of that performance was Matt Henry. The paceman complemented Trent Boult with his clinical display which ended with figures of 3 for 41 from six. Boult ended with 3 for 38 from seven overs.

Martin Guptill, the opener, who smacked an unbeaten 237 in a World Cup fixture against the West Indies a year ago at Westpac, will return to favourite hunting grounds. Guptill hit 11 sixes and 24 fours in that innings and remains in rich form with a top score of 90 when New Zealand beat Australia this week.

Corey Anderson, the New Zealand allrounder, said the home side expected Australia to be stronger than it was in Auckland.

“It's always an advantage playing at home, familiar pitches and familiar ground sizes,” he said. “Regardless of what XI the Aussies put out it's always going to be a strong side. The series is still on the line so we're going to hopefully wrap it up.”

The third and final ODI will be played in Hamilton on Monday.


Australia (from): Steven Smith (capt), David Warner, Usman Khawaja, George Bailey, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Marsh, Matthew Wade (wk), Adam Zampa, John Hastings, Kane Richardson, Josh Hazlewood.

New Zealand (from): Brendon McCullum (capt), Corey Anderson, Trent Boult, Doug Bracewell, Grant Elliott, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Adam Milne, Colin Munro, Henry Nicholls, Luke Ronchi (wk), Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Kane Williamson.

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