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New Zealand have been on a rampage at home this summer, but at the same time they were aware that no side would test them as much as much as the visiting South Africans. AB de Villiers men are the top-ranked ODI side, but New Zealand managed to stop the South African juggernaut by clinching a 6-run win in the Christchurch ODI. South Africa came into the series winning 11 ODIs on the trot, and at Hamilton they equalled their previous record of 12 consecutive win a record set in 2005. They could not go beyond that. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: New Zealand vs South Africa 3rd ODI

South Africa eye a lead in the series in the third ODI, at Westpac Stadium at Wellington. Meanwhile, New Zealand boast of an impressive record at this venue, winning 16 and losing 8. New Zealand won the 2015 World Cup quarter-final against West Indies at this ground, a match best remembered for Martin Guptill’s 237 still the second highest ODI score. To New Zealand’s dismay, Guptill is out of the side due to an injury despite there being news of his return during the series. Ahead of the third ODI, let us have a look at the likely XIs for both the sides.

New Zealand

Top-order: New Zealand are missing a top quality player in Guptill at the top of the order. Dean Brownlie has not done too bad replacing the stalwart. With scores of 63, 31 and 34, Brownlie will probably open with the woefully out-of-form Tom Latham, who is currently keeping wickets as well. Against Bangladesh, Latham was in rich touch, but since the start of the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy, his scores read 7, 0, 3, 0 and 2. Captain and batting lynchpin Kane Williamson will be at No. 3; with two fifties in two games, Williamson will certainly aim for a three-figure score.

Middle-order: New Zealand coach Mike Hesson recently called Ross Taylor one of the ODI cricketers. Taylor is an impact player, and it is good news for the New Zealand camp that Rosco has struck form at the right time. Banking on his 17th ODI ton, Taylor will hope to continue his sublime touch at his hometown Wellington.

New Zealand bat deep and their middle-order comprises of some utility all-rounders. Neil Broom may not have fired yet in this series but he has been brilliant since his comeback against Bangladesh earlier this season. He will be followed by all-rounders Jimmy Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme and Mitchell Santner. Neesham’s 57-ball 71 not out played a big role in the Christchurch win.

Neesham and de Grandhomme will be expected to play a crucial role as supporting medium-pacers, while Santner off late has been exceptional with his left-arm spin. So far, in 4 ODIs this year, Santner has picked 8 wickets at 21.62 and an economy rate of 4.67.

Bowlers: New Zealand have pinned their hopes on the successful pace duo of Trent Boult and Tim Southee. Leg-spinner Ish Sodhi has not really set things alight but is expected to make the cut as the second specialist spin bowler due to his rich domestic form.

New Zealand’s Likely XI: Dean Brownlie, Tom Latham (wk), Kane Williamson (c), Ross Taylor, Neil Broom, Jimmy Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Trent Boult.

South Africa

Top-order: This is a star-studded line-up and it starts from right at the top. In Hashim Amla and Quinton de Kock South Africa have probably the finest contemporary ODI opening pair. At No. 3 is Faf du Plessis. His scores read 14 and 11 in this series, but he was at his best against Sri Lanka in South Africa’s previous assignment. The visitors have a very strong top three.

Middle-order: De Villiers batted at No. 5 in the previous game due to fitness worries. He will be expected to resume duties at 4. Rated No. 2 in ICC ODI Batting Rankings, AB had played a crucial role in South Africa’s win in the first ODI at Hamilton. If the South African skipper goes berserk, nothing can stop Proteas going 2-1 up.

The depth of South African middle-order can be further gauged with JP Duminy at No. 5, David Miller at 6 and Dwaine Pretorius at 7. It does not stop there. At No. 8 is the dangerous Chris Morris, followed by Andile Phehlukwayo, who had dashed New Zealand hopes with a final-over six at Hamilton.

Morris, Pretorius and Phehlukwayo are key fast bowlers as well. South Africa have historically produced some of the finest all-rounders, and in times to come we will see more of them.

Bowlers: South Africa have two of the finest limited-overs bowlers at their disposal. Kagiso Rabada is expected to return, while the No. 1-ranked limited-overs bowler Imran Tahir will look forward to make a stronger impact in this series. He failed to fetch a bid in the IPL auction despite his five-for at Auckland in the T20I last week. Since then he has picked only a wicket in the first two ODIs. If needed, Duminy can roll his arms with his useful off-spin.

South Africa’s Likely XI: Quinton de Kock (wk), Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis, AB de Villiers (c), JP Duminy, David Miller, Dwaine Pretorius, Chris Morris, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Imran Tahir.