NZ speedster Neil Wagner has said that they are in no mood to take two Test matches against England as a ‘warm-up’ to the WTC final against India. India and New Zealand are the top two teams to have qualified for the summit clash that is set to play at Southampton. But before that the Kiwis are set to take on England in a two match Test series starting June 2.
“We’re not going to treat these two Test matches against England just as warm-ups [for the WTC final]," “I know for a fact we’re going to get out there and pride ourselves the way we’ve been playing Test cricket and we want to win Test matches for New Zealand." He told reporters before leaving Auckland for England. The 35-year-old was among the second set of Kiwi players for the flight to London, a first set of players carrying the likes of skipper Kane Williamson have already landed in UK. Wagner and others assembled in Lincoln where they got some match practice as they bowled with the Duke’s ball—specifically used in UK.
“It’s been quite nice, it’s obviously got different characteristics to the Kookaburra," Wagner said. “The way we’ve been training for the last while is something we didn’t always have in the past, having the facilities and having a marquee up and getting a number of trainings in before going to England. On tours in the past you rock up there and you’ve only got a couple of trainings and maybe one head out with the Dukes ball before the first Test and with that you can find yourself a little bit behind.
“But having had those little bit of trainings leading into it has been quite beneficial, just because it’s a little bit different, and obviously adapting to it. It’s been really good preparation and everybody is excited bowling with it. Sometimes you have to control all that because there’s a high expectation of the ball doing a lot and moving around but sometimes you can get there and it can be quite flat and slow as well. The nice thing about it is we’ve got a wealth of experience and the guys have been there before so we can feed off each other and bounce ideas off each other as well," he was quoted as saying by ESPN Cricinfo.