General question 1: How do they recover from the psychological disaster of Newlands?
Answer: Not very well. The team looked defeated quite quickly.
General question 2: How will the bowlers respond to a slower pitch with very little likely to be on offer?
Answer: Not too badly, but they were still outclassed. There was some swing on offer, and Boult, Bracewell and Munro all made the batsmen work hard at the crease. Wagner and Patel had some good moments, but neither of them will look back on this test with fondness.
General question 3: Will the batsman do as badly against swing as they did against seam movement?
Answer: Not quite, but almost. BJ Wattling was the stand-out, but only really because he was the only one playing with soft hands. As a result when he edged the ball it went into the ground, not to a fielder.
- Can Guptill find a way to rotate the strike?
- Will McCullum bat as responsibly on a pitch that’s slower?
- Will Williamson, Flynn and/or Franklin find a way to score as well as occupying the crease?
- Will Brownlie adapt to a slower pitch, where he can’t use the pace of the ball as easily?
- Will Wattling recover his form that he has previously shown on slow tracks?
- Will Bracewell find a way to get out the better batsmen without getting much assistance from the pitch?
- If he plays, will Patel find a way to take wickets as well as containing the batsmen?
- Will Trent Boult be able to bowl in his first spell as well as he bowled in his third spell at Newlands, and will he be able to dislodge the tail-enders as well as the quality batsmen?
- If Neil Wagner plays, does he have the weapons to dislodge quality batsmen who are not frightened by his pace?
Overall the New Zealanders failed to answer the questions that this test asked of them, and as a result were soundly beaten.