MS Dhoni, New Zealand vs India 2019
Indian team. (Photo by Mike Owen/Getty Images)

Former Indian player Madan Lal has issued a warning to the India National Cricket Team. Lal believes the visitors must not take the Kiwis lightly. In fact, New Zealand has always been a side which has punched above its weight. Kane Williamson side is in good form as they recently whitewashed Sri Lanka in the three-match ODI series. Furthermore, they will be playing in their own home conditions.

On the other hand, India had a successful tour of Australia where they won their maiden Test series ever. Furthermore, they also clinched the ODI series by 2-1 to end the tour on a high. Subsequently, the Virat Kohli’s men have their confidence high.

India vs New Zealand 2018-19 | Shikhar Dhawan |
Getty Images

Madan Lal said New Zealand has a balanced side and they are going to give a tough competition to the Men in Blue.

“New Zealand is a tough side. I think they will give a tough fight to India because they have a very balanced team and also have experienced players in the side”, Lal told Sports Tak.

Madan Lal, who was part of India’s World Cup 1983 squad believes it benefits the team when they play tougher sides before the World Cup. Thus, it would help them in preparing better for the mega event.

“It will be better for India to face a tougher team ahead of the World Cup. When you play matches against these teams, it only benefits the team. They have a quality batting line-up and their bowling attack is also very good.

“I think, it will be advantage India in New Zealand. They will be confident after beating Australia in their own backyard. We have also given them a tough fight in the last few India-New Zealand series. But we can not take them lightly,” he added.

Madan Lal England India 2018 Bhuvneshwar Kumar Jasprit Bumrah

The first ODI between New Zealand and India will take place at Napier on January 23. India’s confidence is sky high and they would aim to continue the impetus against the Blackcaps. New Zealand is currently placed at the number three rank in the ICC ODI rankings whereas India occupies the second place.

It is going to be a good series for both the teams to prepare for the World Cup event. Both teams will be looking to cover their bases and hit the ground running from the get-go.

India had some positives with MS Dhoni and Bhuvneshwar Kumar coming back into form in the ODI series against Australia. Thus, the Men in Blue will like other players to also take their opportunity.

Gautam Chauhan

Cricket is my first love. I want to be a wordsmith. I want to weave magic with my words.