Visakhapatnam, Sep 7: India will welcome back Yuvraj Singh and Harbhajan Singh as they face New Zealand in the first of the two-match Twenty20 International series here on Saturday night.
Yuvraj has been the biggest draw for this game. His return has helped ticket sales soar. And the ACA-VCA Stadium will packed much before the clash begins at 8pm IST on the weekend.
There is another big star who has made a comeback to Indian team. It is Harbhajan. With R Ashwin playing so well, it is doubtful whether the man from Punjab will get a chance tomorrow.
The game is the first step of preparation towards ICC World Twenty20 2012 which starts in Sri Lanka on September 18. India and New Zealand will be testing their combinations for the the big trophy.
Fans will forget India and New Zealand as two teams battling it out on the ground. They will all be geared up to watch Yuvraj who won his battle against a rare germ cell cancer and will be seen on the cricket field for the first time since November, 2011.
India won the two-match Test series 2-0. They will be hoping to extend their domination of the Kiwis. However, the visitors are bolstered by the arrival of left-arm spinner and former captain Daniel Vettori and few other new faces after Test players left India.
The pitch promises to be full of runs. As it can be seen in any T20, this too should be exciting.
New Zealand might have been swept aside in the preceding Test series, but they can be very competitive in the shortest format of the game.
Tamil Nadu paceman Lakshmipathy Balaji too has returned to Indian team after more than two years. His fine performances for Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL 5 has put him back in the India senior team.
Saturday might be all about Yuvraj but India will be eager to give him a winning return. The left-hander too will be hoping to make a big contribution.
India: MS Dhoni (captain and wicketkeeper), Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina, Irfan Pathan, Harbhajan Singh, Ravichandran Ashwin, Zaheer Khan, Lakshmipathy Balaji, Ashok Dinda, Piyush Chawla and Manoj Tiwary.
New Zealand: Ross Taylor (captain), Brendon McCullum (wicketkeeper), Martin Guptill, Kane Williamson, James Franklin, Rob Nicol, Jacob Oram, Doug Bracewell, Daniel Vettori, Tim Southee, Adam Milne, Nathan McCullum, Ronnie Hira, Kyle Mills and BJ Watling.
Match starts at 8 pm IST. Catch ball by ball commentary and regular updates, reports on www.thatscricket.com