India's Mayank Agarwal plays a shot during the first day of the second Test cricket match between India and New Zealand at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on December 3, 2021 | Photo: AFP
Mumbai: India won the toss and decided to bat first in the delayed start of the second test match against New Zealand on Friday.
The toss was delayed by nearly 2 1-2 hours due to a wet outfield. Unseasonal rains in Mumbai hampered preparations for both sides as well in the lead-up to the match.
Only 78 overs will be bowled in the first day’s play, with two extended sessions split by a tea break. Lunch was taken early to make up for lost time. The morning session was washed out.
The first test in Kanpur ended in a draw.
India made three changes to its playing XI from Kanpur. Virat Kohli is back to lead the side again after a rest. Pacer Mohammed Siraj and off-spinner Jayant Yadav also come into the playing side.
All three changes were a result of injuries. Ishant Sharma (dislocated little finger on left hand), Ravindra Jadeja (right forearm) and Ajinkya Rahane (left hamstring) all missed out.
New Zealand also sustained an injury blow with skipper Kane Williamson ruled out because of a persistent left elbow injury. Tom Latham will lead the test world champions in his absence.
Daryl Mitchell replaces Williamson in the Black Caps’ starting side, its only change.
Test cricket returns to the Wankhede Stadium after a gap of five years when India last played against England in 2016.
The Mumbai pitch should offer better bounce than in Kanpur. Both pace and spin will come into play as the game progresses.
India: Mayank Agarwal, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (captain), Shreyas Iyer, Wriddhiman Saha, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Jayant Yadav, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj.
New Zealand: Tom Latham (captain), Will Young, Daryl Mitchell, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, Tom Blundell, Rachin Ravindra, Kyle Jamieson, Tim Southee, William Somerville, Ajaz Patel.