New Zealand spinner Mitchell admitted that his team’s execution against India in the ongoing ODI series against India may have been a bit off at times, but their plans have been pretty solid.
New Zealand spinner Mitchell admitted that his team’s execution against India in the ongoing ODI series against India may have been a bit off at times, but their plans have been pretty solid.

New Zealand spinner Mitchell Santner admitted that his team’s execution against India in the ongoing ODI series against India may have been a bit off at times, but their plans have been pretty solid. (ALSO READ: The key numbers that highlight India being up 3-0 over New Zealand)

After conceding the five-match series after losing the first three matches, New Zealand will be desperate to search for  a win when the two teams meet on Thursday for the fourth ODI to be played at the Hamilton. (ALSO READ: Maiden call-ups for Daryl Mitchell, Blair Tickner for T20I series against India)

“​I think the plans have been pretty solid – maybe the execution’s been off at times,” said Santner during the pre-match press conference. (ALSO READ: Eccentricity key for rare allrounders like Hardik Pandya)

Adding more Santner, who is returning from a lengthy injury lay-off, said that India have got off to good starts in all three games and from his team’s perspective early wickets will allow them to bowl a bit more to the middle-order, which has not been the case in the series so far. (ALSO READ: New Zealand are better than Australia, but India are too good: Harbhajan Singh)

“If we can get two wickets in the top 10 [overs], or even the first five – if we can get into their middle order a bit earlier … every game they’ve got off to good starts, we haven’t seen much of their back end.

“I guess the key for us is to keep taking wickets through the middle, keep being aggressive. They obviously hate getting out – just got to find ways to try and get wickets,” he said.

India’s top-three have been in good form scoring 132 runs in the 1st ODI chasing 156 to win, while batting first India made 172 for the first two wickets in the second ODI and added 152, chasing 244 in the third.

Equally impressive have been the bowling unit, who have claimed early wickets and have not allowed New Zealand to get away.

“With the bat, it’s trying to build those partnerships throughout,” Santner said. “We saw a good one between Ross [Taylor] and Tom [Latham] last game, then we lost a couple and we fell over a bit. They’ve bowled very well in the top 10 and we haven’t really got away so if we can get through the first 10 [overs] with wickets in hand then set up the back-end where we’ve got some power hitters that we can get to a pretty good total,” he added.

While admitting that New Zealand are playing a very good side, Santner sounded hopeful that his team can put up a good fight going forward.

“We are playing a very good side … I do think we’re not too far off.”