Dambulla: India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni won the toss and decided to bat against New Zealand in their do-or-die encounter of the tri-series on Wednesday.
A fresh pitch was laid out for the final league game of the tri-series, but MS Dhoni wasn't afraid of exposing his batsmen first up after their humiliating collapse batting first in the previous match. This match is a virtual semi-final for both teams and the grey area remains the batting.
Both teams went in with a few changes. It's not often you see any Indian team go in with four frontline seamers, but India chose to drop Pragyan Ojha for an extra fast bowler, leaving the spin responsibilities with Ravindra Jadeja. Munaf Patel, in the reserves for a long time, finally got a game. Rohit Sharma wasn't in the best of touch with the bat so he was dropped for Virat Kohli.
New Zealand suffered a blow earlier with news of Jacob Oram heading back home due to a knee injury. Another senior pro, Daryl Tuffey, pulled up with an injury, leaving New Zealand to field the less-experienced seam duo of Tim Southee and Andy McKay.