3rd Test: New Zealand vs England Live Streaming 2013 | NZ vs Eng
New Zealand and England face off in a winner-takes-all third and final Test, with the tourists striving for a series-clinching victory despite the absence of star batsman Kevin Pietersen. After rain-affected draws in Dunedin and Wellington, hopes are high for a result in the match beginning Friday at Auckland's Eden Park.
After rain-affected draws in Dunedin and Wellington, hopes are high for a result in the match beginning Friday at Auckland's Eden Park.
New Zealand eye a rare series win and England will seek to cement their position as the number-two ranked Test nation.
England are short-priced favourites to prevail in Auckland. Anything less against the unfancied Black Caps would be widely seen as a failure despite Pietersen's absence with a knee injury.
The batsman will miss both the last Test and the Indian Premier League due to the injury which may sideline him for up to eight weeks, the England and Wales Cricket Board said in a statement Wednesday.
Clear weather is forecast for the Test and Eden Park's drop-in wicket promises more bounce than the docile pitches of the opening two fixtures, which have drawn criticism from the England camp.
New Zealand, ranked eighth in Test cricket, have not won a series against England since 1999, with their sole series victory on home soil back in 1984.
Skipper Brendon McCullum, whose only other Test series since taking the helm late last year resulted in two innings defeats to South Africa, said a victory would provide a huge boost for his team.
For England, victory would maintain their momentum with back-to-back Ashes series against Australia looming later this year.
But Cook said his side had to ignore the pressure and simply play according to the conditions in Auckland.
Few pundits predicted a close series when the tourists arrived, with England tipped to continue the dominant form they showed in India.
Instead, the early tour jitters that have plagued England in recent years emerged as their powerful batting line-up self-destructed with a succession of rash shots trying to bludgeon the Black Caps into submission.
Rain delays meant New Zealand ran out of time chasing victory in Dunedin. The situation was reversed in Wellington, where England had the Black Caps on the ropes only for the weather to intervene again.
New Zealand: Brendon McCullum (captain), Trent Boult, Doug Bracewell, Dean Brownlie, Ian Butler, Peter Fulton, Tom Latham, Bruce Martin, Hamish Rutherford, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling (wk), Kane Williamson
England: Alastair Cook (captain), James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Ian Bell, Stuart Broad, Nick Compton, Steven Finn, Graham Onions, Monty Panesar, Kevin Pietersen, Matt Prior (wk), Joe Root, Graeme Swann, Jonathan Trott, Chris Woakes