Black Caps On The Brink

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Brendan McCullum can lead the Kiwis to a shock series win. Image courtesy of

After suffering humiliating defeats in both Test matches on their tour of South Africa , New Zealand  can seal a shock One Day International series win against the Proteas by winning the 2nd ODI at Kimberley on Tuesday. The Black Caps scored a thrilling one wicket win over the hosts in the series opener after bowling them out for 208 on Saturday and are well placed to record their first series success against South Africa since 2004.

South Africa will be without AB de Villiers for the rest of the series after the skipper copped a two game ban for a slow overrate at Paarl, with match referee David Boon suggesting that they were six overs short of their target. Faf du Plessis  – who has burst onto the international scene in the past twelve months - will captain the side, with David Miller called into the squad to replace the de Villiers. Morne Morkel is likely to return after being left out on Saturday, while coach Gary Kirsten may elect to give Farhaan Behardien  his 50 over debut to bolster a middle order that saw only one player score more than 33 in the series opener.

All-rounder James Franklin  was named man of the match in game one after guiding his side to victory with an unbeaten 47 and will be part of what could be an unchanged side for the Black Caps. BJ Watling  continued his fine tour of the country of his berth by scoring an important 45 and will be looking to continue his good form, but more will be expected of Brendon McCullum . Despite being regarded as one of the best limited overs players in the world, the Kiwi skipper has a career average of just 27 when you take out the matches that he has played against minnow nations, and his 131 against Pakistan in 2009 is the only time that he has scored an ODI ton against the ‘big boys’.

South Africa has lost just one of the six ODI matches that it has played in Kimberley, although that defeat came against Sri Lanka last year when the tourists chased down 299 with an over to spare.

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