Auckland, Jan 15 (IANS) New Zealand picked a settled line-up, the only change being the inclusion of fast bowler Adam Milne, for the five-match ODI series against World No.1 India starting at Napier on Sunday.
The 13-man-squad is identical to the one which drew the recent ODI series against the West Indies, with the exception of Auckland batsman Colin Munro who will return to play for his province.
General Manager National Selection Bruce Edgar said the players had been rewarded for a number of strong performances against the West Indies.
"It was pleasing to see every player stand up at some stage of that series and there were some simply outstanding efforts headlined by Corey Anderson's world record one day ton," he said.
Edgar says the New Zealand now face one of their toughest challenges at home against a side ranked at the top in the 50 over game and No.2 in Tests.
"We know we'll have to play out of our skins, and out match them player for player to be competitive against such a powerful side. But we showed against the West Indies that we can play extremely well on our day and are capable of beating any side," he said.
Head Coach Mike Hesson says the team is fully aware of the challenges that lie ahead.
"Matching yourself against the best in the world is what you play international cricket for and I know the guys are buzzing about this opportunity. It's also an important part of our build-up for next year's World Cup where India are the defending champions," he said.
The ODIs are slated for Napier (Jan 19), Hamilton (Jan 22), Auckland (Jan 25), Hamilton (Jany 28) and Wellington (Jan 31). The two Tests will be played in Auckland and Wellington and the squad will be announced after the ODI series.
The ODI squad: Brendon McCullum (captain), Martin Guptill, Jesse Ryder, Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Corey Anderson, Luke Ronchi, Jimmy Neesham, Nathan McCullum, Tim Southee, Kyle Mills, Mitchell McClenaghan, Adam Milne