New Zealand Will Prepare For Afghanistan Game Just As Every Other Game: James Neesham

New Zealand all-rounder James Neesham said that his side will be approaching their final group stage against Afghanistan just as any other team.

On Friday, New Zealand were struggling against Namibia as they were 87/4 at the end of the 14th over.

New Zealand thump Namibia by 52 runs

It was fireworks from middle-order batters Glenn Phillips (39*) and Neesham (35*) that boosted the team’s total to 163/4.

Some sharp bowling by the new-ball pair of Tim Southee (2/15) and Trent Boult (2/20) restricted Namibia to 111/7 as the Black Caps won by 52 runs.

New Zealand vs Namibia
New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson with his counterpart Gerhard Erasmus. Credits: BlackCaps Twitter

If New Zealand wins against Afghanistan, then they automatically qualify for the knockout stage with irrespective of the result between India and Namibia on November 8.

We are focussing on each game as it comes: James Neesham

Neesham said that they are focusing on each game as it comes and admitted that Afghanistan game will be like a virtual quarter-final.

“Honestly, there has been a lot of talk about that from the outside but for us, even before the very first tournament, we knew that we had to knock over one of India and Pakistan and win the rest of the games and get through. It was a very simple equation,” Neesham said in the post-match press conference.

James Neesham
James Neesham. Credits: Twitter

“We are focussing on each game as it comes. Zero disrespect to Namibia and Scotland in T20 rankings point of view. We knew all teams had enough quality to knock anyone out on their way.

“For us, it’s just about going and taking care of our game. I am sure, if at the start of the tournament, we were offered a virtual quarter-final against Afghanistan in the last game, we would have taken that. So we will prepare for the next game just as we have been preparing for every other game,” he added.

If New Zealand wins against Afghanistan, then they automatically qualify for the knockout stage with irrespective of the result between India and Namibia on November 8.

Also Read: There Is Pressure On Afghanistan-New Zealand After India’s Rising Net Run Rate: Sunil Gavaskar