Crowe bats for green pitches against IndiaNapier, PTI: The huge gap in their ICC

The huge gap in their ICC rankings might make India the favourites but former New Zealand batsman Martin Crowe feels the Kiwis have a fair chance of winning the upcoming ODI and Test series if they prepare pitches that would assist seamers.

India, touring New Zealand for the first time since early 2009, have just three old faces in their ranks for the Tests -- captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and fast bowlers Zaheer Khan and Ishant Sharma.

“New Zealand should focus their preparation on exposing a whole line-up that has never before batted in these conditions,” said Crowe.

“Tim Southee, Trent Boult and Neil Wagner (or Adam Milne as back up) are the men to target India’s top six. They are confident, fit and work well together. Most importantly they can produce a significant amount of swing to trouble any top player early in his innings,” he added.

India, ranked number one, will play five ODIs and two Tests against the Black Caps, placed eighth, and Crowe insisted that New Zealand must play to their strength, focussing on making green tops.

“The pitches should be green and hold moisture. This environment has been missing recently. Hadlee and Co, from the glorious past, didn’t bowl on featherbeds; they gained assistance off the seam as well as through the air.

“With respect to an Indian attack that is ageing a little with Zaheer back in, local groundsmen should be watering freely, just as the ones in India remove life from their pitches,” Crowe wrote in his column in ‘Espncricinfo’.

While India are ranked number two in Tests, New Zealand are lying at eighth position, but Crowe felt that rankings would hardly matter when the two teams contest on energetic pitches. “India are ranked No 2 and New Zealand No 8, but don’t let that fool anyone.

This series, if played on energetic pitches, where results are found in approximately four days, could well be as memorable as any we have seen in this part of the world for a while,” Crowe stressed,” said Crowe.

Liked the story?

  • 0

    Happy
  • 0

    Amused
  • 0

    Sad
  • 0

    Frustrated
  • 0

    Angry