The last time India and New Zealand had met in a 50-over game, the latter had registered a thumping win. New Zealand had bowled out India for just 179 before chasing down the total with utmost. However, that was a warm-up game just a handful of days before the World Cup and the Black Caps will definitely have their task cut out against the Men in Blue. But ahead of the showdown, their pacer Lockie Ferguson has reflected on what his team needs to beat the formidable opponents.
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New Zealand will be high on confidence after winning their first three games. They did not face much of a challenge from the likes of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. However, India are definitely not going to be an easy opponent and the Black Caps will definitely enter the contest as second favourites. India have already proved their title-credentials by beating South Africa and Australia in their first two games and will be eyeing a third win.
With both the teams in good form at the moment, the contest promises to be a cracker. However, rain could play spoilsport. As many as three games have been washed out in the last 5 days and the forecast for the upcoming game is not promising either. One point against an opponent like India is not a bad option but Lockie Ferguson want all the points.
“We want to play,” Lockie Ferguson said on Tuesday. “It’s the World Cup. We’re playing against India in the World Cup and it’s an opportunity to get two points and we don’t want to get rained-out games. I don’t think any players do but if that happens then so be it. We can’t control that but we’re looking forward to playing India and getting some confidence against them.”
Ferguson seemed to have learned his lessons after playing against India at home earlier this year. The fast-bowler has played three ODIs against India and has not enjoyed much success. India won all the three games with Ferguson having a forgettable outing. In his second ODI against India, he ended up conceding 81 runs. However, he has learned from his mistake and spoke on what needs to be done to put pressure on India.
“They showed us that they’re probably a lot more patient in a way,” Ferguson said. “And although we’re looking to take wickets, sometimes we got a little bit expensive. I think taking wickets up front is the key to [beating] India but, if not, creating pressure and building dots.
“They’re world-class players, you’re not going to blow them out of the water, but if you can build up enough pressure against them and then create a half-chance, that could be the wicket and you can then build from there. Obviously, they’re playing some great cricket and they’re one of the top teams in the competition but we’re definitely looking forward to the opportunity of playing them in England and we haven’t played them for a while in England,” he added.