Christchurch: The Test series between New Zealand and Windies ended 2-0 in favour of the home side, and the three-match One-Day International series that followed too slipped out of the visiting side's hands with back-to-back losses in the first two games in Whangarei and Christchurch.
Things haven't gone Windies' way this tour. To make matters worse, newcomer Ronsford Beaton has been pulled up for a suspect bowling action.
The third ODI on Tuesday (December 26) at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch might be a dead rubber, but there are enough reasons for Windies to try and make something out of it.
In the second match, Windies had folded for 121 inside 28 overs after letting New Zealand post 325 for 6 despite having it down to 186 for 5 at one stage.
New Zealand's batsmen have dominated in both the matches to date. George Worker, who has replaced the injured Martin Guptill, struck half-centuries in both games to give the hosts a solid platform. Henry Nicholls, Ross Taylor and Todd Astle have also been among the runs.
Worker, along with Colin Munro, will once again open the innings and look to continue to impress, what with Guptill expected to take back his opening spot once he recovers from his hamstring injury.
In the bowling department, New Zealand has understandably relied on pace to do the damage. Doug Bracewell bagged four wickets in the first game, and it was Trent Boult who rattled the visitor with career-best figures of 7 for 34 in the second.
Stuart Law, the Windies coach, revealed that Chris Gayle was recovering well from a viral infection that had kept him out of the second match, and could return for the final encounter.
Beaton, technically still allowed to bowl in international cricket till he undergoes a test on his action and the results are revealed, is reportedly suffering from a side strain, which means he and Kesrick Williams, who is nursing a hamstring injury, are expected to be missing in action on Tuesday.
New Zealand: Tom Latham (capt, wk), Colin Munro, George Worker, Neil Broom, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, Mitchell Santner, Todd Astle, Doug Bracewell, Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult, Matt Henry, Seth Rance.
West Indies: Jason Holder (capt), Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, Shai Hope (wk), Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Mohammed, Rovman Powell, Ashley Nurse, Shannon Gabriel, Sheldon Cottrell, Kyle Hope, Nikita Miller, Chadwick Walton, Ronsford Beaton, Kesrick Williams.
Stats and trivia
Tuesday December 26, 2017
Start time 11:00 local | 22:00 GMT (-1d)