Having arrived in India from a chilly winter back home,the Kiwis were greeted by the blazing sun that shone down on them in Visakhapatnam a couple of days earlier. And the likes of Doug Bracewell & Co were eager to bask in the warmth and the scenic views on offer from their beachfront hotel.
A number of the New Zealand A squad even decided to cross the street and venture on to the nearby RK beach.
The Black Caps,however,wouldn’t have expected to be doing pretty much the same come Wednesday afternoon. If anything,the likes of Bracewell in particular would have been dreading the prospect of having the sun on their back during the scheduled opening day of their tour. But for once the weather forecasts,not overly reliable in this part of the world otherwise,was on the money as heavy rains lashed Visakhapatnam,leaving the port city in a state of disarray while it lasted. The showers relented by noon,but the drainage facilities at the Port Trust Stadium,used generally as an athletics venue,weren’t really primed to deal with the torrential downpour.
And play was entirely washed out on the opening day of the first unofficial Test between India A and New Zealand A.
The forecasts had predicted thunderstorms in Visakhapatnam after a brief dry spell,and what started as a drizzle in the morning soon turned into a torrential downpour. And it wasn’t just the ground staff at the Port Trust Stadium,who were sent scurrying for cover.
The entire city seemed to come unstuck. The two teams arrived in earnest in preparation for the game.
Despite the lack of facilities,there was still a ray of hope till around 11 am when play was officially called off and the teams left the stadium. The signs are ominous for the remainder of the match with forecasts indicating similar showers over the next couple of days.
And New Zealands second-stringers,who are itching to get a go,may well end up with an extended vacation in Visakhapatnam.