New Zealand might have been bruised and battered by India in the Test series, but batsman Luke Ronchi today asserted that the visitors would be a completely different side when it comes to limited-overs cricket and they were banking on their recent good form in the ODIs to sign off the long tour on a high note.
New Zealand were humiliated 0-3 by India in the Test series but Ronchi backed his team to come good in the five-match ODI series, starting with the first game at the picturesque HPCA stadium here tomorrow.
“It’s completely different ball game now, completely different cricket, a cricket which we have been playing really well for a while now. Tests are gone now. We can’t do anything about it. Now we are just looking forward to the five ODIs,” the wicket-keeper batsman told reporters during pre-match media briefing today.
“We are a good ODI team and if we can continue playing the way we have been playing for a while now, it’s going to make for an interesting series.
“Our ODI cricket has been good for a quite a while now. We did not play that well in this Test series but in the past we have done great job in Tests as well. After losing 0-3 we are going to look at this ODI series and make sure we perform well and finish off the tour on a high. We will be positive going into each game and back our processes and skills,” insisted Ronchi.
Ahead of the ODI series, New Zealand have been bolstered by the return of their most successful bowler and most destructive batsman in Tim Southee and Corey Anderson respectively.
Southee, who has 135 one-day wickets, missed the recent three-match Test series with an ankle injury and has not played a single ODI this year while Anderson, who has the highest strike of any New Zealand player in ODI history, returns from an ankle injury to bolster the batting.
“We have got some new players in the group as well who can bring new energy. Some guys in this group are quite seniors and have been for long enough to know their roles and know how to play cricket,” Ronchi said.
“We have got some injuries in our bowling department but the guys that have come in are fantastic cricketers and have done really well for New Zealand. Everyone has got full confidence in everyone here.”
In their place, India will field youngsters like Jayant Yadav, Mandeep Singh, Manish Pandey, Axar Patel to name a few in the squad.
Asked about the changes in the Indian team, Ronchi said: “We are actually quite lucky that we have got the IPL and those guys are big IPL players and we have played with them in the IPL. You actually know a lot more about them because of the IPL and TV. These days you don’t really go into a series not knowing anything about a player.”
Speaking about his own role in the playing eleven, Ronchi said he considers himself as a finisher.
“That’s always my role was in the side for the last few years, batting at no.7 and finishing off the innings. My role is the same from middle to late order, hitting and finishing off the innings. In some cases if we are in trouble, build up an innings and then finishing off,” he said.