If India's batsmen knew the name of one New Zealand fast bowler before they arrived here it would have been that of Kyle Mills. The seamer, who has been signed by the Mumbai Indians, began the series as the spearhead of the attack, but repeated assaults by Virender Sehwag and his friends have left Mills perilously close to being dropped.
"I can't quite put my finger on it (poor form)," Mills admitted on Tuesday afternoon. "I struggled at the start of the one-day series, but I thought in the last two games I bowled really well. It was probably the most confident I've been going into a Test match, but in Hamilton, I didn't get the results I desired. You turn the page, you have to move on because there's no hiding in international cricket."
Mills said it might be a loss of rhythm that has caused him to be ineffective. "I'm a big rhythm bowler, I really need my rhythm and it wasn't there in that last Test. I was bowling two sides of the wicket which, in international cricket, is not good enough."
When asked if he was worried about being dropped, Mills said, "I'd like to put a performance on the board. It's always much more comfortable and more confident when you've got a few results behind you. I didn't bowl well last week so I know the pressure is on me.
"You always get knocks in international cricket. The person who bounces back best will get the results. I rely on my past performances, I've put this last game behind me. Cricket's my business and I have to give it my best every time I play. If there comes a time when my best isn't good enough, then so be it."
Mills was honest enough to concede that New Zealand hadn't achieved enough as a Test nation over the years. "In all honesty, this has been a problem in New Zealand cricket for 40-50 years, except for the 80s when we had a couple of special players," he said. "We've never really excelled as a Test nation. I want to be part of the group that turns that around."