Hamilton: Almost all of England's key players caused New Zealand worries in the opening Twenty20 international on Saturday and will chase a repeat performance for the second match in Hamilton on Tuesday. England's top six put runs on the board - in particular, Luke Wright and Jos Buttler flexed their muscles - and the pace duo of Steven Finn and captain Stuart Broad harassed the locals with their variations of pace at a venue notorious for its short boundaries.
This prompted Broad to term the win at Eden Park as England's best performance under his leadership, and what this does is raise the bar for the visitors for the next two matches. Broad himself made an excellent return to international cricket after a lengthy injury absence with a career-best for 24 to go past Graeme Swann as England's leading wicket-taker in T20Is, and leading from the front again would be a great motivator for a young team.
England will closely monitor the fitness of batsman Eoin Morgan who is in doubt for the match because of a jarred back. Morgan was unable to train with the team at Seddon Park on Monday after having left the field in the latter stages of England's 40-run win in Auckland the day before. He top-scored in England's record total of 214 with a 46-ball 46 and his absence would be a blow for the tourists. Joe Root would be the man drafted in should Morgan not be match-ready. Fast bowler Jade Dernbach is believed to be available for selection despite having stitches in his left forearm after being "spiked" in fielding drills.
With just two days between matches there is not much time for New Zealand to reflect on the 40-run defeat but as skipper Brendon McCullum admitted after the match, there is a lot to improve on in all departments. New Zealand dropped five catches in the field, conceded far too many runs and no batsman barring opener Martin Guptill really looked like threatening England.
Andrew Ellis went for 13.33 in his three overs despite taking two wickets and could be replaced by Otago allrounder Jimmy Neesham in the XI. Nathan McCullum conceded 49 runs in his four overs and is another player under the scanner. New Zealand will hope that Grant Elliott and Ian Butler have recovered in time.
Defeat would it make it four consecutive T20I losses to England at home, dating back to 2008.
New Zealand: 1 Martin Guptill, 2 Hamish Rutherford, 3 Brendon McCullum (capt/wk), 4 Ross Taylor, 5 Colin Munro, 6 James Franklin, 7 Jimmy Neesham, 8 Nathan McCullum, 9 Ronnie Hira, 10 Trent Boult, 11 Mitchell McClenaghan
England: 1 Michael Lumb, 2 Alex Hales, 3 Luke Wright, 4 Jonny Bairstow, 5 Joe Root, 6 Jos Buttler (wk), 7 Samit Patel, 8 Stuart Broad (capt), 9 James Tredwell, 10 Steven Finn, 11 Jade Dernbach
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