New Zealand have already secured the series win, after registering two victories in the first two games against West Indies. So, in the third T20I, while the hosts will look to complete a series whitewash, West Indies will be desperate for an elusive win.
New Zealand have the advantage when we consider past encounters between the two teams in T20 cricket, having won nine out of 15 matches. In the last five games between the sides, the Kiwis have won four with one contest ending in a no result due to rain. In fact, the last time West Indies defeated New Zealand in a T20I was in 2014.
Overall: Matches – 15 | New Zealand – 9 Wins | West Indies – 5 Wins | No Result – 1
Last 5 Matches: New Zealand – 4 Wins | West Indies – 0 Wins | No Result – 1
While you could go for the above team, you also have the option of choosing your own team from cricket.com’s Fantasy Research Centre. Based on algorithms we come up with six different teams that could fetch crucial points.
GROUND DETAILS & TEAM COMBINATION
In Sunday’s match, which was at the same venue, 404 runs were scored in 40 overs with 12 wickets falling. Both innings were quite different from each other from the perspective of run-scoring and wicket-taking, and that resulted in a big win for New Zealand. Having said that, it was a good match for batting and West Indies’ batsmen would have probably done better if they weren’t chasing such a monumental target.
Since 2018, the average run rate in T20Is at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui has been 9.3. While that might be around par when you consider matches held in New Zealand, it does indicate batting-friendly conditions and, therefore, we have selected a batsmen-heavy team.
During the above-mentioned time period, pacers have bowled 63.7% of the deliveries and taken 68% of the wickets at this stadium in T20Is. Fast bowlers (18.6) have a better bowling strike rate than spinners (22.5) as well here. Hence, we have gone with two specialist pacers and Kieron Pollard, and a sole spinner in Ish Sodhi. Sodhi has a good record at the Bay Oval, having taken 11 wickets in seven T20I innings so far.
Not selecting Nicholas Pooran is a bit of a risk, but we did so to strengthen the bowling. If you want to include him over Andre Fletcher or Glenn Phillips, then you will have to replace either Lockie Ferguson or Sheldon Cottrell with a bowler who is available for 8 credits. Another way to go about it is to pick Pooran over Seifert directly.
There could be a few interesting match-ups too.
Devon Conway has made an impressive start to his international career. While he was unbeaten in the second match, Kieron Pollard dismissed him in the first and it was not the first time this has happened in T20 cricket. In four T20 innings that Conway and Pollard have come up against each other, the latter has got the wicket of the former thrice with Sunday’s game being an exception.
Shimron Hetmyer has really struggled against Lockie Ferguson in the two matches in this series so far. While the West Indian batsman was dismissed for a four-ball duck by the New Zealand pacer in the first game, he managed just seven runs off 10 balls in the second despite a climbing required run rate.
While West Indies have lost both matches so far, skipper Kieron Pollard has carried on his good form with the bat. He managed his top T20I score (75*) in the first match and followed it up with a quickfire 28 in the second. Since 2019, Pollard has a batting average of 48.7 and strike rate of 154.8 in T20Is which are truly remarkable numbers. He has also taken one wicket in each match of this series so far which is an added bonus.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts Pollard could score 11-28 runs and could take 0-1 wickets in this match.
Devon Conway has taken to international cricket like a duck takes to water. In two T20Is so far, he has managed scores of 41 and 65*. He has been incredibly consistent in the recent past as well. He has scored 40+ in each of his last six T20 innings and has managed 30+ scores in 10 of his last 11 innings in the format. If he continues this run, we could see him become a regular member of the New Zealand side even when Colin Munro and Kane Williamson return.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts Conway could score 18-41 runs in this match.
Andre Fletcher got starts in both matches but wasn’t able to kick on and make a big score which will be frustrating for him. Considering the level of competition for the opening spots in the West Indies T20I team, Fletcher will know that he needs to be at his best ahead of next year’s T20 World Cup. He had scored 30+ in three of his last five innings in T20 cricket.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts Fletcher could score 13-36 runs in this match.
Lockie Ferguson produced a sensational spell – his best T20 bowling figures (5/21) – to help New Zealand win the first T20I of the series on Friday. Ferguson is usually a great pick in fantasy cricket because he is a very reliable wicket-taker. So far, he has played in only 10 T20Is and has already taken 20 wickets at a strike rate of 11.7. He has picked up at least one wicket in nine of those 10 matches.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts Ferguson could take 1-2 wickets in this match.