Hamilton - 25th-29th November 2016


After a comprehensive victory in Christchurch, New Zealand will be looking to continue this form at Hamilton, whilst Pakistan will be keen to put in a better performance, having been dismissed for 133 and 171.

The lack of a warm-up game has hindered the visitors quite seriously, I think, as conditions in NZ are very different to what they previously played in in the UAE, as demonstrated by their lack of ability to post a decent score in the first Test. One bright spot was their bowling, restricting the hosts to 200 and giving themselves a fighting chance in the game after the first innings.

New Zealand will be without Trent Boult, with Matt Henry coming in to replace him, and will likely welcome Mitch Santner back into the team after he was absent with a wrist injury.

Pakistan captain Misbah ul Haq will be suspended for slow over rates with Mohammed Rizwan the likely replacement, and Wahab Riaz could come into the side to bolster the bowling options. Wahab should enjoy the conditions on offer, with the extra heat aiding swing, and offering the possibility of reverse, the 4s about him being top Pakistan bowlers looks a little large.

With rain around the draw is trading sub-3s, but since 2010 there hasn't been a Test at Hamilton that has gone into the fifth day, and with the forecast for day 2 onwards being downgraded to showers, a lay of the draw looks good here. With sides batting first losing each of the last five Tests here, the toss will be important, and if NZ are batting first, getting on Pakistan to big odds should be a decent trading opportunity.

Trading Notes: Look to oppose the batting side for the first innings with the pitch expected to offer seam movement, and the warmer conditions aiding swing bowlers. A similar lay of the draw as the first Test, once the rain has abated, would be a good approach too.

Back Wahab Riaz for top Pakistan bowler at 4s with Ladbrokes