Neil Wagner looking forward to some banter with Alastair Cook

Neil Wagner, New Zealand, Essex, County Championship, Anthony McGrath
Essex bring back Neil Wagner for all formats. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

New Zealand’s Test specialist Neil Wagner is looking forward to playing against his Essex teammate Alastair Cook in the upcoming Test series against England.

The two shared the same dressing room during last year’s successful county championship at Chelmsford. Wagner and Cook will join forces to defend their Specsavers Division One title.

It will be quite an interesting battle – then afterwards we can sit down, have a laugh and talk about it,” revealed Neil Wagner while talking to Daily Mail. “He’s a great lad – I loved spending time with him in the Essex changing-room,” added the left arm pacer.

Alastair Cook Sydney Test Ashes England Australia Allan Border
Alastair Cook became the second batsman to 150 consecutive Tests for a team after Australia’s Allan Border. Image Courtesy: Getty Images

Both Wagner and Cook share immense respect for each other. Wagner tagged the record run scorer for England as a ‘top man’ and that the two share funny banter between them.

He’s a top man… there has been some funny banter between (us) even before this series got close, so I look forward to playing against him,” concluded Neil Wagner.

England and New Zealand will lock horns against each other in the Pink Ball Test match at Eden Park, Auckland starting February 25. The Three Lions won the enthralling 5-match ODI series by a margin of 3-2.

Neil Wagner, New Zealand, Essex, County Championship, Anthony McGrath
Essex brings back Neil Wagner for all formats. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

This is the first time England will put on their whites since the 4-nil Ashes drubbing down under. The side will be bolstered by the presence of Ben Stokes with both and ball.

Which means, Craig Overton, who cracked his ribs in the Perth Test, will be on the standby in the series. However, Overton believes that being prepared is the way to go.

That’s always the aim. You don’t know until the day before what the side is, so you’ve just got to prepare as if you’re going to play and hope you get the nod when it comes,” suggested Overton.

Craig Overton, Rib Fracture, Boxing Day Test, Melbourne, Ashes 2017-18, Australia Vs England,
Craig Overton played through injury at WACA. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

There have been growing talks within the cricketing fraternity that the pink-ball does a bit more under the lights. Moreover, Neil Wagner agrees to disagree with the growing misconceptions.


There’s been a lot of talk about it, but I’ve not seen it do anything too much different,” the 32-year old opined. Furthermore, the South African born cricketer expects stiff competition in the upcoming series.

Stuart Broad, England, New Zealand, Test, 400th Wicket
Seam bowler wants to deliver big for England. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

England is a proud nation and (has) a quality cricket team, so I wouldn’t expect anything less than this being a really tough series,” concluded Neil Wagner.

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