After serving up an entertaining T20 series, New Zealand and Pakistan now go head to head in a two-game test series.
The hosts go into this one, with plenty of talent at their disposal in the form of captain Supreme Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Tim Southee and Trent Boult.
The supporting cast isn’t too bad either, and on home soil, will be a tough opponent for the visitors Pakistan.
The Black Caps, who valiantly lost in the 2019 World Cup final to England have a very settled test squad and an experience leader in the 30-year old Kane Williamson.
In contrast, tourists Pakistan have a new captain in the form of wicketkeeper batsmen Mohammed Rizwan.
Rizwan, since coming into the team has been excellent. Polished with the gloves, and assured with the bat, the 28-year old does have some captaincy experience.
With the greatest respect to be at a level of Wasim Akram or Imran Khan will take some time, if it’s afforded to him.
Rizwan, will have a very talented bowling line up at his disposal, in the form of star spinner Yasir Shah, left-armed Shaheen Afridi, teenage sensation Naseem Shah and of course the quite brilliant Mohammed Abbas.
The bowling looks to be well stocked, and with the addition of all-rounder Faheem Ashraf also included, that crucial fifth bowler looks to be a master stroke.
Or is it? Shaan Masood, Abid Ali, former captain Azhar Ali, Fawad Alam and Harris Sohail make up the top order.
Bar former captain Ali, this top order although talented is arguably inexperienced. This could play into the Kiwi’s hands.
So, with that in mind, it’s crucial for Pakistan’s bowlers to try help Pakistan’s potentially weak batting line-up.
Will this be the case? We will have to wait to see, the first test starts on Boxing Day with the conclusion of the test series on 2nd January.