Kane Williamson wary of Kuldeep-Chahal combo ahead of India tour

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Kane Williamson wary of Kuldeep-Chahal combo ahead of India tour

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SportsCafe Desk


Kane Williamson has admitted that New Zealand will face a tough battle against the Indian spin attack of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal in the upcoming series. The Kiwi skipper, however, was quick to add that the success of the tour would depend on how well his team could adapt to the surface.

The wrist spinning duo were instrumental in India's convincing ODI series win over Australia in the recently concluded series, picking 13 wickets in the four matches that they played and left the Australian middle order bamboozled with their variations. Williamson believed that it was the exposure to the IPL, at a young age, that helped them develop their skills to such a deadly effect.

"Both (Kuldeep and Chahal) are very talented bowlers. Their exposure in the IPL has been huge for them and pushed their case to play for India. They both have been very successful. We know it will be a tough challenge, but one that guys are looking forward to," Williamson said, reported PTI.

"It's not too many Chinaman bowlers going around and those coming in have all been fairly successful. It's a challenge that the guys are looking forward to.

"Obviously their (Kuldeep and Chahal's) skill sets are very good, but it's important how we adapt to the surfaces."

After the Indian selectors announced that Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja had been dropped from the ODI series against Sri Lanka, a number of Indian fans were left shocked since the duo had been so impressive in the home season before the 2017 IPL. However, Kuldeep, Chahal, and Axar Patel made sure that the team did not miss the contribution of the experienced pros. The Kiwi captain said that he was not surprised by the decision due to the "dense scheduling" in modern day cricket.

"There are so many quality players within the Indian squad and they have been playing so much cricket lately that it's only natural that certain players are rested at certain times," Williamson explained.

"At times, throughout the summer, when we had busy schedules we did the same thing. It's impossible for everyone to play all formats all the time because the schedule is so dense. It's the nature of it, but you always know that the team India put out will be very strong."

We played some good cricket, but I don't think we displayed a complete performance going into the last game. It was disappointing.

This is the second year running that New Zealand will tour India for an ODI series after their 2-3 defeat last year. After India won the first match by six wickets, New Zealand fought back in the second ODI with a six-run win. India regained the lead in the third match with a comfortable seven-wicket win only to see the gritty Kiwis level the series again. However, it all went wrong for the visitors in the final match as they were outclassed in Vishakapatnam, succumbing to a 190-run defeat.

"It's always a tough tour coming to India as a lot of oppositions have found in recent times. To be 2-all going into that last game a year ago was a good effort," Williamson recalled.

"We played some good cricket, but I don't think we displayed a complete performance going into the last game. It was disappointing. It's nice to be back here again and the guys are looking forward to the tour.

"A number of guys have had experiences of playing over here which is always helpful, but we still want to prepare well. These two (practice) games (On October 17 and 19) coming up are important for us in our preparation," he added.

New Zealand made a surprising call when they decided to pick only half their team for the tour announcing that the remaining players would be picked from their 'A' team, that finished their Indian tour recently. Williamson explained that the 'A' team would have some experience on the Indian surfaces and about Indian conditions which could help the senior team on the tour.

"The 'A' tour was fantastic for our side to get exposure in this part of the world. A number of guys coming from that side into the Black Caps. It is nice to have that exposure. Most of those guys haven't experienced this part of the world before," Williamson concluded.

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