New Zealand eyeing series win over Pakistan in third ODI


New Zealand will look to complete an ODI series victory over Pakistan at Eden Park in Auckland on Sunday.

The Black Caps hold a 1-0 lead following the cancelled second meeting in Napier on January 28, with Pakistan now only able to draw the three-match series.

Poor weather conditions saw the second meeting abandoned, with umpires deeming the wet surface unsafe for players for either side.

New Zealand failed to impress in their first ODI on home soil but managed to scrape a 70-run victory in Wellington after a late batting performance from their lower order lifted the hosts to a haul of 280 runs.

Henry Nicholls hit 82 runs at Basin Reserve to mark his scorecard with a career-high ODI top score.

Martin Guptill made just 11 in that series opener, whilst Kane Williamson also struggled to a paltry 10 runs. Both players are expected to return to form sooner rather than later and should cause the visitors some fielding problems.

Trent Boult was the pick of the bowlers on the day, taking four wickets for 40 runs, clearing out the end order with ease.

Pakistan, meanwhile, will be hoping to rely on the talents of left-arm fast bowler Mohammad Amir, who performed admirably to take 3-28 in difficult circumstances.

New Zealand have been forced to submit a formal apology after the stadium announcer played the sound of a cash register during one of Amir's spells with the ball in hand.

Amir's recent return to international cricket after his involvement in a match-fixing scandal in 2010 - he received a five year ban and served three months in prison - has been difficult, with some areas of the Wellington crowd jeering the 23-year-old bowler.

The visitors will look to end their campaign on foreign soil on a positive note ahead of the ICC World T20 but face a tough test with the Black Caps historically very dangerous bowling side, particularly on home wickets.