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Pitch and conditions

The forecast is good with some high cloud and a bumper crowd anticipated for the day game.

The pitch will have a haircut before the match but should provide decent bounce and carry. That also means plenty of runs.

Key players

New Zealand - Kane Williamson


He's yet to make a century at Hagley Oval in any form. He's scored 103 runs in his three ODIs there. Was a cut above the rest of the New Zealand batting in testing conditions at Seddon Park. He's due. His team need him in a game they have to win to stay in the series hunt.

South Africa - AB de Villiers
Got his team over the line in a tight finish in Hamilton. A skilled technician who can accelerate in a blink. When he's in the middle, South Africa believe. No cause is lost. Get rid of him cheaply and watch New Zealand's body language lift.

Key stat - 13

The number of successive ODI wins South Africa will have achieved if they win today. It'll be a new record. They lay off talk of statistics having much meaning. This one does because it tells them they are heading in the right direction with the Champions Trophy coming up in June.


Last time the teams met in Christchurch, February 17 2004

The second game in a series of six, and won by New Zealand by five wickets with five overs to spare. South Africa's 253 for eight was dominated by captain Graeme Smith's 80. However rival skipper Stephen Fleming trumped that with 108 as New Zealand reached 255 for five, current batting coach Craig McMillan finishing the job with an unbeaten 70 off 69 balls.

Series leaders


New Zealand:

(from) Kane Williamson (c), Dean Brownlie, Tom Latham, Ross Taylor, Neil Broom, Jimmy Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Luke Ronchi, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Lockie Ferguson, Matt Henry, Trent Boult.

South Africa: (from) AB de Villiers (c), Quinton de Kock, Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis, JP Duminy, David Miller, Farhaan Behardien, Andile Phehlukwayo, Chris Morris, Kagiso Rabada, Imran Tahir, Tabraiz Shamsi, Dane Paterson, Dwayne Pretorius.