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India vs New Zealand: Kane Williamson feels familiarity no guarantee for success

Kane Williamson is among several New Zealand players who feature in the Indian Premier League, but he feels acclimatising for the limited-overs series against Virat Kohli’s dominant Indian cricket team will not be easy.

india vs new zealand 2017 Updated: Oct 15, 2017 18:45 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
India vs New Zealand,India national cricket team,New Zealand national cricket team
Kane Williamson, who has experience of playing in the Indian Premier League, has said familiar conditions will not guarantee success for New Zealand in the upcoming series against Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team(AFP)

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson expects a tough limited-overs tour of India despite most of his players being part of the Indian Premier League.

“The wickets out here vary so much within the country. When you say you’re coming to India to play, you’re required to adapt from ground to ground. You’re never quite sure of the surface you’re going to get. Part of the adapting is also the climate you’re in. It’s nice to be here a few days early and get the guys used to the heat and humidity,” he said.

New Zealand will play two one-day practice games against the Board President’s XI in Mumbai, on October 17 and 19. The teams will play three ODIs and T20s each.

Of the 15-member New Zealand squad, only six are yet to play in the IPL. Besides, Todd Astle, George Worker and Glenn Phillips are in India for the past two weeks with the New Zealand A side.

“A number of guys have had experience over here which is always helpful, but we still want to prepare well,” Williamson said. “It’s always tough coming to India as a lot of opposition (teams) have found in recent times. To be two-all going into that last game a year ago (they lost the five-match ODI series 3-2) was a good effort. We played some good cricket, but I don’t think we played a complete performance to go into the last game. It was disappointing.”

Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal were the key bowlers for India in the series against Australia. (AP)

Facing Kuldeep, Chahal will be tough

Williamson praised India’s new spin pair of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal. “The exposure in the IPL has been huge for them… We know it will be a tough challenge, but one that guys are looking forward to. There are not too many Chinaman bowlers going around. (But) there are a few more that come into this squad. Their skill sets are very good, but their adapting to surfaces will be one of the most important things.”

The last time New Zealand toured India around a year ago, they faced different spin combinations — R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja in Tests and Amit Mishra and Axar Patel in the ODIs. Though Ashwin and Jadeja have been sidelined again, Williamson wasn’t concerned.

“There are so many quality players in the Indian squad and they have been playing so much cricket lately it’s only natural certain players are rested at certain times,” he said. “At times, throughout the summer when we had busy schedules we did the same thing. But you always know the team India put out will be very strong.”

First Published: Oct 15, 2017 18:45 IST