South Africa lead the three-match series 1-0    Getty Images
South Africa lead the three-match series 1-0 Getty Images

South Africa beat New Zealand in the second Test at Wellington by 8 wickets, taking 1-0 lead. They will leave no stone unturned to win the third and final Test at Hamilton. New Zealand, on the other hand, will have to put up a much better performance to level the series. South Africa have dominated the most part of the series in all the departments. However, both teams have injury concerns of their own and might be forced to make a change or two. Dane Piedt has been brought into the South African side just for this Test, as the pitch is expected to be on the slower side. Full Cricket Scorecard: New Zealand vs South Africa 3rd Test at Hamilton

South Africa wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock s fitness was in question, but skipper Faf du Plessis revealed that de Kock will play. However, for New Zealand, they will be without their two main fast bowlers Tim Southee (hamstring tear) and Trent Boult (side strain). As a result, New Zealand have just two fit fast bowlers in Matt Henry and Neil Wagner. All the same, they will have three fast bowling all-rounders to pick from for the final Test.

Let us now take a closer look at the likely XIs for both sides.

Top order: The form of Stephen Cook will be under scrutiny, after registering scores of 0, 3, 3 and 11 in the four innings so far. The Hamilton Test will be a big game for him. He needs to get some runs under his belt for his own good as well as the team s. However, there is no doubt about his partner Dean Elgar s form. The left-handed opening batsman has scored 255 runs at 63.75, which includes a century and a fifty. New Zealand, too, have a similar problem when it comes to their openers. While Jeet Raval has shown good form, Tom Latham has struggled to get runs under his belt. Like Cook, Latham too will be keen on getting a good score for his side. New Zealand vs South Africa, 3rd Test Preview

Amla, too, has not been in the best of forms this series. Same can be said about Kane Williamson, barring that 130 he scored in the first Test. Otherwise, he has scores of 1 and 2 in the other two innings. In the absence of Ross Taylor, Williamson has to take more responsibility when it comes to scoring runs.

Middle order: Neil Broom made his Test debut in the second Test, but failed to have any sort of impact. He scored a duck in his debut innings, but looked a little more comfortable in the second innings, scoring only 20. New Zealand, however, will continue to persist with him. Henry Nicholls will hope that he can continue his good form from the second Test. He scored a vital 118, which gave New Zealand s total some respectability. Jimmy Neesham has neither impressed with bat nor ball, but may have to give away his place to Colin de Grandhomme. It will be a toss-up between Neesham, de Grandhomme and Scott Kuggeleign.

Wicketkeeper BJ Watling has played many gritty innings in the past and dug the Black Caps out of trouble on numerous occasions. He has scored 113 runs in his three outings including a fifty. Other than Williamson, New Zealand will count on Watling for runs lower down the batting order.

South Africa, on the other hand, have an excellent middle-order. The likes of Faf du Plessis, JP Duminy, Temba Bavuma and Quinton de Kock are as good a batsmen as any in the world. All of them have been in good form in the series. The problem New Zealand bowlers will have is they might get through one or maybe two, but they have two more quality batsmen to follow. READ: NZ vs SA, 3rd Test: Williamson vs pacers, Amla vs Wagner and other key battles

Bowlers: Although Piedt has been flown in for this Test, it is highly unlikely that he will get a go in this match unless South Africa drop a fast bowler.

Duminy was brilliant with the ball in the previous Test and has staked claim as the second spinner in the team after Keshav Maharaj, easing his skippers conundrum. The fast bowling trio of Vernon Philander, Morne Morkel and Kagiso Rabada, who have 13 wickets between them in the series and will hope to continue to knock over the New Zealand batsmen.

With Southee and Boult out, New Zealand will heavily depend on Henry and Wagner to deliver. They have quality spinners in Jeetan Patel and Mitchell Santner, who will be handy on this slow track.

New Zealand likely XI: Tom Latham, Jeet Raval, Kane Williamson (c), Neil Broom, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling (wk), Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Jeetan Patel, Matt Henry, Neil Wagner

South Africa likely XI: Stephen Cook, Dean Elgar, Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis (c), JP Duminy, Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock (wk), Vernon Philander, Keshav Maharaj, Morne Morkel, Kagiso Rabada