Dipping form not a worry: Williamson

New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson. Reuters

Kane Williamson has had a good tournament with the bat but not so many of his team-mates that was glaring in the last three matches which New Zealand lost on the trot. But the Kiwi skipper said the losses will have little bearing on a knockout game when they take on India in the first semifinal here on Tuesday. Excerpts.

On defeats: I think for everybody it’s sort of starts fresh tomorrow after what was a very tough round-robin stage, and we were certainly expecting that it would be tough. But what we didn’t quite expect coming into the tournament was the large variety of conditions that we faced. That definitely made perhaps batting with any rhythm a real challenge for everybody, so being able to adapt with the bat and just trying to contribute to what would be a competitive total if you are batting first, or obviously chasing a score is certainly what is the most important thing. And the guys’ mindsets will definitely be that going into tomorrow’s match and we’ll have to assess conditions again.

On if too much focus on India helps others: Yeah, I guess there’s truth in that, that India are a very successful side and a very popular side with a large population and a lot of cameras (smiling), which is great. They bring so much to the sport that we are fortunate to be a part of. But it is a cricket match. You do try and simplify things as best you can, as a team, and it does come back to the cricket that we want to play and not too reliant on external factors and how we adapt to conditions and, you know, that is the most important thing. You get to the last four, semifinal, each side will want to put each other under pressure and we know when that happens that the bit next can be a real challenge, so both sides will be looking to do that.

On handling pressure becoming crucial: Yeah, it’s hard to pinpoint one thing that stands out as being perhaps the be-all-and-end-all. I suppose both sides, every side in international cricket trains as hard as they can to give themselves the best opportunity on the day. And often in those small moments pressure arises and if you do get that momentum, then that can be really important, certainly in white-ball cricket.

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