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India vs New Zealand | McLean Park Prepares for Return of International Cricket With India ODI

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: January 21, 2019, 1:00 PM IST
India vs New Zealand | McLean Park Prepares for Return of International Cricket With India ODI

New Zealand players train in Napier ahead of first ODI. (Twitter/Blackcaps)

McLean Park in Napier is set to host its first international match in two years when New Zealand take on India in the first of five One-Day Internationals on Wednesday (January 23).

Drainage issues and delays in revamping the outfield saw a game against Australia being abandoned and two other games, against South Africa and England, shift to Hamilton and Tauranga respectively.

Ross Taylor said the ground seems in good shape but was wary of how the pitch would behave. The venue hasn't had much cricket, apart from a couple of Super Smash games in 2018-19.

"They've had a few dramas, but it looks like the ground and the venue is in good nick," said Taylor. "I haven't been here for a while. I watched the game on TV the other night, which I think was the second time they'd played on it. They said it would be a little bit harder than it was the other day, but it's always a nice ground to come and play at, and you still have to sum up conditions.

"Sometimes, teams go a bit too hard early, still trying to find out what is a par total and not getting too far ahead of yourself. You still have to earn the right to score over 300, but there are times when you can score under 300 and win games."

Taylor was glad that the venue, home to his Central Districts side, was hosting international matches again. However, he expected more support for the visiting Indian team than the hosts themselves.

"Any time India come here, they're a powerhouse," he said. "The NZ-Indian community come out and support them, and quite often, there are just as many Indians in the crowd as Kiwis. In some situations, there are more. It's great to play in front of a packed house and many of those supporters back New Zealand, when India aren't in the country."
First Published: January 21, 2019, 1:00 PM IST

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