India will be looking to do what has never been done when they take on New Zealand in the fifth T20I at the Bay Oval on Sunday – register a 5-0 win in a bilateral T20I series. Having won all four matches – with the last two matches having been decided in the Super Over – India have an invincible air about them as they head to Mount Maunganui.
Rohit Sharma and Mohammed Shami, both of whom were rested in the 4th T20I, may make returns to the XI. Skipper Virat Kohli and Jasprit Bumrah might opt to drop out of the playing XI to accommodate them.
However, if India decide to not go the experimentation way, the axe might fall on Sanju Samson and Shivam Dube.
Rishabh Pant, who has not got a chance in the series so far, might get an opportunity to sparkle in the 5th T20I. With KL Rahul having donned the wicketkeeping gloves after he suffered a concussion in the recent ODI series against Australia, Pant has fallen down the pecking order in recent times. Sunday could be his chance to roar back into contention.
Shardul Thakur and Navdeep Saini, both of whom have done commendably in the series, are both expected to feature in the 5th T20I.
From the home side, Kane Williamson, who missed the 4th T20I with a shoulder strain, is expected to be back in the team for the last match of the series.
The Bay Oval is known for high scoring matches, and another 200+ chase could be on the cards in the last match of the series.
All five T20Is played at this ground have been won by the side batting first, which makes the toss a crucial factor.
The weather is predicted to be cool and comfortable and there is negligible chance of rain.
(Match starts at 12:30 pm IST)
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