New Zealand speedster Neil Wagner has divulged that his side will play their best and give it their all to defend their 2021 World Test Championship (WTC) title.
The Kane Williamson-led side lifted the inaugural WTC title when they defeated India earlier this year. New Zealand will begin their title defense when they face the same opponents away from home for a two-match Test series, starting later this month.
Ahead of the first Test, Kiwi pacer Wagner wants the Black Caps to continue with their brand of cricket and make their nation proud. In a video shared by New Zealand Cricket (NZC), the 35-year old said that his side will give their all and play their best, and the results will take care of itself.
“Whatever the result is, as long as we leave everything out there and give it our best, give it our all and play the way we play, the rest will take care of itself. I guess the main thing for us now is to put our heads down, and try and defend it, give ourselves the best chance to play the cricket we’ve been playing – the brand we’ve been playing – and make New Zealanders proud,” said Wagner in the video.
With Trent Boult opting to miss out for the upcoming Test series, a lot will be dependent on the left-arm pace of Neil Wagner.
India is a tough place to play Test cricket: New Zealand pacer Neil Wagner
Wagner, who has 229 international Test wickets to his name, also acknowledged that playing Test cricket in India is not an easy task for any visiting team. India have lost just one of their last 16 home Test series, which goes to show how dominant they have been as a host nation.
While citing that it would be tough to play Test cricket in India, Wagner reflected that his side is ready for the challenge. The left-arm pacer also elucidated that adaptation to hot weather conditions in India would be key. He said:
“It is a tough place to play, but I think everyone’s looking forward to that challenge – which is tough over here, it’s called test cricket. It’s just about adapting to the heat, obviously trying to stay dry as much as you can and knowing that the ball’s not going to swing for very long.”
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Following the completion of the ongoing three-match T20I series between India and New Zealand, both teams will square off in a two-Test series. The first test between the two sides will be played on November 25-29 at the Green Park Stadium in Kanpur.