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11-Jan-2017 06:14:00 GMT
New Zealand v Bangladesh, 1st Test, Wellington

Boult back as New Zealand looks tour sweep

Wellington: Bowling spearhead Trent Boult could return as the sole change for New Zealand in the first Test against Bangladesh in Wellington on Thursday.

Coming off back-to-back Test victories over Pakistan and a 3-0 triumphs in both the 50-over and Twenty20 series against Bangladesh, New Zealand are looking for a clean sweep of the tourists as they build towards the arrival of South Africa in March.

The left-arm fast bowler Trent Boult missed the second Test against Pakistan because of a knee injury but showed he had regained his express pace with deliveries in excess of 145 kilometres per hour (90mph) in the final Twenty20 against Bangladesh in Mount Maunganui on Sunday.

There could only be one change in the New Zealand line-up with a fit Trent Boult replacing Matt Henry. Given their settled batting line-up, it seems Dean Brownlie would have to wait for his turn.

New Zealand won their first five Test series against Bangladesh but drew their two Tests on tour in 2013, when Taylor posted his highest score yet against the team with an unbeaten 54 in the first game.

At the Basin Reserve, Taylor averages a shade under 56 and he has scored centuries there against the West Indies in 2013 and India in 2009.

In his last Test in Hamilton in November, Taylor scored a century against Pakistan before having a small, benign growth removed from his left eye.

Batting second would be a preference at green-topped Basin Reserve, which has a history of assisting the fast bowlers early before flattening out.

With the Basin wicket offering pace and bounce on the opening day, Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim is looking for his batsmen to prove themselves in unfamiliar conditions, something they were unable to do in the limited-over matches.

Despite the unfamiliar conditions Mushfiqur said he believed he had the weaponry to produce Bangladesh's first Test win over New Zealand if his bowlers can stick to their game plan.

Bangladesh have confirmed they have a full squad to call on with captain Mushfiqur Rahim back to fitness after missing most of the limited-overs games with a hamstring injury.

Opener Imrul Kayes has recovered after crashing into an advertising hoarding in Tauranga in the second Twenty20 on Sunday.

Bangladesh will make at least one change to their XI with Shuvagata Hom out of the Test squad.

Taskin Ahmed is expected to debut, while Mehedi Hasan could be picked ahead of Taijul Islam to make room for Rubel Hossain.

Teams from

New Zealand: Kane Williamson (c), Trent Boult, Dean Brownlie, Colin de Grandhomme, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Jeet Raval, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner and BJ Watling (wk)

Bangladesh: Mushfiqur Rahim (capt. & wk), Tamim Iqbal, Imrul Kayes, Mominul Haque, Sabbir Rahman, Shakib Al Hasan, Mehedi Hasan, Taijul Islam, Rubel Hossain, Kamrul Islam Rabbi, Soumya Sarkar, Taskin Ahmed, Nurul Hasan (wk), Subashis Roy, and Mahmudullah

Pitch and conditions
The green track could result in prodigious seam movement. The weather forecast predicts rain on the first and the fourth day with high winds swirling around the ground.

Stats and trivia

  • Tim Southee is ten wickets away from becoming the fifth New Zealand bowler to take 200 Test wickets.
  • Ross Taylor has 16 Test centuries. One more hundred will help him draw level with Martin Crowe for the record of most Test centuries by a New Zealand batsman.

Match facts
January 12-16, 2017
Start time 1100 local (2200 GMT -1d)

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