Cricket: NZ select two debutants to face India

New Zealand will have two test debutants when they play India in the second test starting at the Basin Reserve in Wellington tomorrow.

Batsmen Tom Latham is in for Ross Taylor, whose wife is expecting their second child, and allrounder Jimmy Neesham comes in for leg spinner Ish Sodhi.

The decision to omit Sodhi means New Zealand spin bowling will be in the hands of occasional off-spinner Kane Williamson. Neesham's inclusion means New Zealand will have five fast medium bowlers - Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Neil Wagner, Corey Anderson and Neesham.

New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum expects the Basin Reserve pitch to play similarly to that on which they bat the West Indies by an innings before Christmas.

''It looks a little bit greener than what we had against the West Indies and looks a bit harder too,'' he said.

''I expect a bit of pace and bounce, and a bit of sideways (movement) too.''

McCullum is philosophical about his chances of winning the toss tomorrow morning. His record is ordinary and he knows it's a bowl first scenario.

''We've found ourselves in precarious positions having to bat first this summer and come through it pretty well, so it'll mean one more big effort if we do find ourselves batting first.''

He confirmed Latham will be a straight swap for Taylor at No 4 in the order, while Neesham will bolster the lower order at No 8.

Black Caps squad for second test v India:
Brendon McCullum (c) - Otago Volts
Corey Anderson - Northern Knights
Trent Boult - Northern Knights
Peter Fulton - Canterbury Wizards
Tom Latham - Canterbury Wizards
Jimmy Neesham - Otago Volts
Hamish Rutherford - Otago Volts
Tim Southee - Northern Knights
Neil Wagner - Otago Volts
BJ Watling - Northern Knights
Kane Williamson - Northern Knights

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