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It's a bit late to start devising ways for the Black Caps to save the test in Hamilton.

Having got off to a flying start in the first session on the opening day, India have pulled away slightly in every session since.

Over the three days, this has created a big gulf between the sides, and India are going to win this game well.

The Black Caps selectors might look at their middle order for the remaining two tests however.

They need to try to squeeze more runs out of Brendon McCullum who, after all, is rated as our number one player and the superstar of New Zealand cricket.

It's difficult to see McCullum maximising his test potential batting at number seven. It just doesn't give him the opportunity to make the centuries that his talent is capable of because the players around him can't stay at the crease long enough.

Number five is his best position. In my New Zealand days, we had six batters who all wanted to bat five where you are shielded from the new ball and have the time to make big scores.

However, with Jesse Ryder doing so well at number five it would be very difficult to move him now.

Ideally, wicketkeeper McCullum should be at five and Ryder behind him. At the moment, McCullum has the superstar reputation but it is Ryder who is posting the scores.

Ryder looks as if he has real test match quality. Without his and Vettori's batting contribution, the Black Caps would be down and out already.

The Black Caps can still challenge India in the remaining two tests however. What they need are sporting decks - wickets that have sideways movement and/ or variable bounce.

New Zealand has never been a cricketing country to deliberately prepare wickets in our favour and that's the way it should stay. While our groundsmen are quite prepared to enter into discussions over such matters, they don't like being dictated to either.

Our climate encourages the production of wickets which favour our game anyway. And if we get those conditions in Napier and Wellington, the Black Caps have got a rough chance.

But this is a very good Indian side with one heck of a batting lineup. They have a wonderful combination at the top of their order, with players who can dominate and others who can bat for long periods.