'We want to be a little bit better there' - Black Caps to focus on ODI death bowling

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NZN

The Black Caps are targeting an improved death bowling performance in their third one-day cricket international against Pakistan on Saturday, skipper Kane Williamson says.

Black Caps' Lockie Ferguson bowls during the first ODI match, between the New Zealand and Pakistan at the Basin Reserve in Wellington. 6th January 2018. © Copyright Photo: Grant Down / www.photosport.nz

Black Caps' Lockie Ferguson bowls during the first ODI match, between the New Zealand and Pakistan at the Basin Reserve in Wellington.

Source: Photosport

The Kiwis have recorded two comfortable wins, both under the Duckworth Lewis system, in their opening games of the five-match series.

The first in Wellington a week ago was by 61 runs, while the second on Wednesday at Saxton Oval in Nelson was by eight wickets.

But Williamson says his team will need to do better at University Oval in Dunedin this weekend.

"We learned a few lessons I suppose from the last game. They bat very deep, the Pakistani side, and that is the sign of a good team - we know they keep coming hard," Williamson said.

Pakistan recovered from 141-7 in the 37th over in Nelson, to set a respectable tally of 246-9.

Tailenders Hasan Ali and Shadab Khan belted 70 runs off 43 balls for the eighth wicket, Hasan making 51 off 31 balls and Shadab reaching 52 off 68.

"We were able to take those early wickets, which certainly helped us, but their lower order came out and then put together a partnership that gave them a total which could have been a tough chase," Williamson said.

"It was a great sign for them but it's important we learn from that as well and look to do that a little bit better.

"We perhaps weren't quite at our best after we'd taken a number of early wickets, and didn't close out the last few.

"We want to be a little bit better there."

The Black Caps have been boosted by the return of allrounder Colin de Grandhomme, back from bereavement leave after his father's death last month.

Although de Grandhomme has been named in the matchday 12, Williamson says it's yet to be decided if he'll replace either of New Zealand's spinning allrounders Mitchell Santner or Todd Astle.

"The wicket at the moment, they sprinkled it with a bit of water, so we want to have another look when it's fully prepared," Williamson said.

"Colin comes as an allrounder option - we'll have a look tomorrow and see what we think of the surface, whether it's more conducive to spin or seam."

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