Cricket: New Zealand to make one change

By Kris Shannon of APNZ in Bangalore

It may have been the batting that let them down but New Zealand will make a change in the bowling department for the second test against India, starting today in Bangalore.

Captain Ross Taylor said his side have stuck with the majority of players trusted for the task in the first test in Hyderabad, despite those players ending up on the wrong end of a thumping.

The only switch in the team will come in the seam bowling department where Tim Southee should return, possibly in place of Doug Bracewell.

New Zealand are blessed with considerable depth in those stocks, now Trent Boult has arrived as a truly international bowler and Neil Wagner's naturalisation from South Africa has been completed.

Of the five-strong group, Southee and Wagner were left out of the opening test but Southee in particular has impressed in the nets as he presses for a recall.

Boult, who counted Sachin Tendulkar among his three Indian wickets, is the only man guaranteed of his place after he managed to break through in the first test where his fellow seamers struggled, while Chris Martin also performed at his industrious best in claiming one scalp.

That might mean the odd man out is Bracewell, after he managed only 19 overs after succumbing to cramp in the Hyderabad heat.

The under-performing batting line-up have all survived despite being bundled out for 159 and 164 in the innings and 115 run loss to open the tour, though there was only really one change that could have been made.

But Taylor and co have resisted the temptation to bring in BJ Watling, either in place of the wicket-keeper Kruger van Wyk or No 5 Daniel Flynn. Van Wyk will retain the gloves even after some shaky work behind the stumps was compounded by two cheap dismissals in Hyderabad.

"Kruger's had a fair shot at it and this is another opportunity for him," Taylor said. "He obviously hasn't gotten a big score since he's been playing [internationally] but he's been working hard to try to rectify that."

New Zealand have also decided against handing Tarun Nethula his test debut to bowl alongside Jeetan Patel, giving the attack a twin spin option which served India so well in picking up 18 of 20 wickets in the first test.

As Taylor pointed out, facing India in their own conditions is a tough introduction for any bowler, but particularly a spinner considering the hosts' comfort in facing a turning ball.

"There was talk of it but it's a tough ask coming and bowling spin against such a good line-up. It's not only getting wickets but it's being able to tie up an end like the way they did."

Taylor said his side were still haunted by their hammering in Hyderabad, but he was confident his charges could put the loss behind them as New Zealand seek to win a test in India for the first time since 1988.

"I wouldn't say it's easy. You'd be lying if you said it's not the back of your mind. But you've got to try to forget about it as soon as possible, and if you do that you're giving yourself the best chance to succeed out there.

- APNZ

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