Hostile Kiwis to test new-look T20 Aussies

Australia are building a blueprint for Twenty20 success but a showdown with New Zealand at one of cricket's most daunting venues looms as a major test for the new-look side.

Aaron Finch says Australia's T20 clash at Eden Park could be the making of the young side.

Aaron Finch says Australia's T20 clash at Eden Park could be the making of the young side.

Having already locked up a spot in next week's tri-series final, the Aussies will be out to maintain their hot form on Friday night when they face the Black Caps at Auckland's Eden Park.

A near-sellout crowd is expected at the 50,000-capacity venue, which has earned a reputation for providing visiting teams with a hostile reception.

Vice-captain Aaron Finch believes it will be a huge challenge for a side lacking in international experience.

"To come in here and play at Eden Park is one of the more daunting tasks as an international side," Finch said on Thursday.

"The crowd's very vocal, they're very intimidating at times if New Zealand get on top.

"To be able to expose guys to that, I think is a huge factor and something that (can give you) a real read on how they cope with pressure."

Mental toughness is one of several factors that will need to be considered as national selectors look to build their side for the World T20 in two years' time.

Australia's recent turnaround in T20s has been driven largely by Big Bash standouts such as D'Arcy Short and Andrew Tye whose selection was aided by a packed summer schedule.

While David Warner is the only Australian to have played every format this summer, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins are virtual certainties to be picked in an ideal T20 side.

That is complicated by the fact none of them have recently played in the BBL, which has become a strong breeding ground for T20 talent.

"That is hard because you have guys who are playing Test cricket who are some of the best T20 players in the world (but) don't get an opportunity to play Big Bash," Finch said.

"So again, it is about assessing everyone's performances in tournaments they play around the world when they do get an opportunity to play for Australia.

"For example, Mitchell Starc. He hasn't had a chance to play Big Bash for a long time consistently, just the odd game here or there. I think he would be a walk-up start for any T20 side in the world.

"So there has to be a bit of mixing and matching with that and also a little bit of common sense when you are looking at guys who haven't played much T20 in recent times."

Victory for New Zealand in Friday night's clash would extinguish England's hopes and set up a trans-Tasman decider next Wednesday night at the same venue.

Australia are a strong chance to name an unchanged line-up, having gone unbeaten through the series so far.

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