Captain Vettori expects India to come hard

“I suppose that’s the reason we are here,” the Kiwi skipper replied tersely when asked if he believed his side could put it past the hosts. “We are trying to win a game and we realise we have to improve vastly on our performance. We know India will be stronger and will have a huge desire to win. Our performance in Ahmedabad was one of our better ones.

“We need to maintain those standards and repeat what we did in the last game to keep improving. It’s probably nothing different from any Test match but it makes it harder when you are playing the best team in the world.”

Vettori added that the challenge ahead of New Zealand was to remain consistent. “If you want to be good, you have to,” he pointed out. “That’s what India have done for such a long period of time, it’s what Australia did for years on end and so it doesn’t really count for anything if you don’t back it up.”

New Zealand managed to bowl India out twice in game one, but the left-arm spinner is taking nothing for granted. “The big challenge for teams coming to India is to take 20 wickets because of how formidable the Indian batting line-up is and also the nature of the wickets suiting batsmen,” he said. “We managed to do that in the first Test, we have to do it in this one. That’s our focus, that’s our aim.”

Hinting at reverting to three quicks and leaving out Jeetan Patel, Vettori remarked, “The wicket is reasonably flat but will probably have a little bit more pace in it than the one in Ahmedabad. India have done it traditionally (playing two pacers and two spinners) for a long time and been successful with it, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it will work for us.

We have to replace Hamish Bennett anyway, so we will look at all the seamers and see what the right combination is.”

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