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Home Fantasy Prediction NZ vs SA, 1st Test - Fantasy Preview and Top Picks

NZ vs SA, 1st Test – Fantasy Preview and Top Picks

Match: New Zealand vs South Africa, (NZ vs SA, 1st Test)

Date: February 17-21, 2022 – 3:30 AM IST

Venue: Hagley Oval, Christchurch

Where and what time to watch the match live in India 

For those in India, the New Zealand vs South Africa series will be covered by the online streaming platform Amazon Prime Video exclusively. Catch the first Test between the two sides at 3:30 AM IST on matchdays. 

New Zealand vs South Africa, 1st Test: 

High on confidence, Dean Elgar’s South Africa are on the New Zealand tour for a two-match Test series. The two teams will take on each other in the first Test at Hagley Oval in Christchurch from February 17 to 21. 

The inaugural World Test champions New Zealand have had a tough time in the second cycle of the championship. Their tour of India wasn’t a great success as they managed to draw the first Test but were hammered in the second Test by 372 runs. NZ hosted Bangladesh earlier this year but were shell-shocked in the first Test by eight wickets. They bounced back well to win the second game by an innings and 117 runs. 

South Africa are coming off an incredible 2-1 home series victory against a strong Indian side. They lost the first match by 113 runs but roared back after they were written off. SA won the second Test at Johannesburg by seven wickets and third Test at Cape Town also by seven wickets. Keegan Petersen and Temba Bavuma starred with the bat while Kagiso Rabada and Marco Jansen were sublime with the ball. 

The last time these two teams faced each other in the longer format was back in 2017, when South Africa won the three-match series in New Zealand by 1-0. New Zealand, who haven’t won a Test against the Proteas since 2004, have a big challenge ahead of them especially with a couple of key players missing. 

Pitch Report and Weather Forecast for NZ vs SA, 1st Test

Hagley Oval in Christchurch has usually produced pitches that have a good assistance for bowlers with pace, seam and swing on offer. The average first innings score here from nine Test matches reads 308. The average scores in the second and third innings read 288 and 290, respectively while the number comes down to 164 in the fourth innings. 

The weather forecast at Christchurch for the next week looks mostly clear but we could see some rain on the third day with 88% chance of precipitation. The temperature will fluctuate between 15-24°C. 

New Zealand: Expected XI and Team News 

New Zealand has a new-look side for this series with Ross Taylor retiring and Kane Williamson out with an injury. The left arm pacer Trent Boult is also unavailable as he’s awaiting the birth of a child. Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, Matt Henry and Kyle Jamieson will form the bowling attack. Colin de Grandhomme returns after missing most of last year’s action while Hamish Rutherford returns after eight years.

Probable XI – Tom Latham (c), Will Young, Hamish Rutherford, Devon Conway, Henry Nicholls, Colin de Grandhomme, Tom Blundell (wk), Kyle Jamieson, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, Matt Henry 

South Africa: Expected XI and Team News 

South Africa have a pretty settled unit and they’re likely to go in with the same combination that won them the India series. But the absence of Keegan Petersen, who was instrumental in that series victory, is a big blow. Sarel Erwee and Zubyr Hamza will be fighting for that no. 3 spot. 

Probable XI – Dean Elgar (c), Aiden Markram, Sarel Erwee, Rassie van der Dussen, Temba Bavuma, Kyle Verreynne (wk), Keshav Maharaj, Marco Jansen, Kagiso Rabada, Duanne Olivier, Lungi Ngidi 

Head to head record of NZ vs SA

South Africa have dominated New Zealand in the longest format. They’ve faced each other in 45 Tests, out of which, SA have claimed 25 while NZ have won only four games. In the last five meetings, South Africa have won two while the other three ended in a draw.

South Africa – 25 

New Zealand – 4 

Draw – 16 

1st Test: Five players to watch out for in the NZ vs SA match

Here we take a look at five key players you must pick in your MPL fantasy XI: 

Kagiso Rabada: Bowler, South Africa

One of the best fast bowlers in world cricket, Kagiso Rabada has an incredible record in Test cricket. He has 233 wickets from 50 matches at an average of 22.43, including 10 five-wicket hauls. Rabada was outstanding against India, picking 20 wickets from three Tests. He is a good captaincy option, coming at 9.5 credits. 

Tim Southee: Bowler, New Zealand 

Tim Southee is amongst the top bowlers in Test cricket in the last decade or so. He has 329 wickets from 83 Tests at an average of 28.25, including 13 five-fors. Southee has picked 40 wickets in the last nine games and can be a good VC option at 9 credits. 

Tom Latham: Batter, New Zealand 

Tom Latham has amassed 4486 runs in Test cricket at an average of 47, which is exceptional for an opener. He has 12 hundreds and 22 fifties to his name. Latham scored a magnificent 252 in the last Test and will cost you 10 credits. 

Temba Bavuma: Batter, South Africa 

Temba Bavuma has come into his own and was superb against India, scoring 221 runs from three games at an average of 74. Overall he has 2318 runs in Test cricket at an average of 34. Bavuma is priced at 9 credits. 

Devon Conway: Batter, New Zealand

Devon Conway has had a terrific start to his Test career, having scored 623 runs in five matches at an average of 69. He has registered three hundreds and two fifties. Conway scored 109 in the last game against Bangladesh and can be a good C/VC pick at 10 credits. 

MPL Fantasy XI 

Note: The players recommended here need not be a part of the Playing 11 on game day. Users are advised to do their own research also and follow official sources and create their teams. 

Also read: IND vs WI, 1st T20I – Fantasy Preview and Top Picks

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