The second test match between New Zealand and Sri Lanka gets underway in Christchurch on Boxing Day and after Sri Lanka dug in to force a draw in the opening contest and winner here will claim the series.
Wellington was the venue for the first test and New Zealand looked highly likely to win it at the half way stage. The Black Caps had been trading at around 3/10 before the game and they bowled Sri Lanka out for 282 in the first innings with Tim Southee claiming a 6 wicket haul. The home side then replied with 578 runs of their own with Tom Latham undefeated on 264.
At 13/3 in their second innings Sri Lanka looked to be heading for a crushing defeat but Kusal Mendis (141) and Angelo Mathews (120) refused to throw in the towel. They were both at the crease when rain arrived to cut short the final day’s play, a terrific effort in the circumstances and one which keeps the series alive for this second and final test.
This was how the teams lined up at Wellington.
New Zealand: Kane Williamson (c), Tom Latham, Jeet Raval, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling, Colin de Grandhomme, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, Ajaz Patel, Trent Boult
Sri Lanka: Dinesh Chandimal, Dimuth Karunaratne, Kusal Mendis, Dhananjaya De Silva, Angelo Mathews, Niroshan Dickwella, Danushka Gunathilaka, Dilruwan Perera, Suranga Lakmal, Kasun Rajitha, Lahiru Kumara
Betting – Click here for all markets
New Zealand 4/10
Sri Lanka 5/1
Note: Prices correct at the time of posting but are subject to change
Suggested Bet: Runs at Fall of 1st Away Team Wicket, under 20.5 at 17/20
The Black Caps bowlers found it tough going in the final innings of the first test but they did strike early and can do so again in the first innings of this match.