‘Don’t know half the people in this team’- Aakash Chopra on New Zealand’s declining strength ahead of 1st T20I vs India
New Zealand was clean sweeped in the three-match ODI series against India recently. This was the first time since December 2010 that the Blackcaps suffered such a fate against India. Now, both teams are gearing up for the three-match T20I series starting on January 27. Ahead of the series, former India cricketer Aakash Chopra has raised concerns over the Kiwi side for the series.
He started by saying that it is interesting to see left-handed bowling all-rounder Mitchell Santner. Chopra also said that half of the players in the team are unknown commodities. The former opening batter added that 2021 20-20 World Cup finalists have become a slightly weaker side and don’t seem to have the same might as before.
“The opposition team is very interesting. Firstly, Mitchell Santner is the captain. You and I probably don’t know half the people in this team. They are no longer the powerful team they used to be,” said Chopra.
“It has become a slightly weaker unit. When you look at the New Zealand outfit, it seems the team does not have the might. Devon Conway scored a hundred in the last match and he might score a hundred here as well,” Chopra added.
New Zealand has quite a few bowling options: Aakash Chopra
On the other hand, Chopra has said that the Kiwis have quite a few options although maintaining that Finn Allen needs to sort his game out.
“You will look towards Finn Allen once again in batting but his problem is that he gets out to left-armers. You will expect runs from Glenn Phillips and you will expect a big knock from Devon Conway,” said Chopra.
“If they bowl first, Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi’s stature grows slightly. Lockie Ferguson will play, but who will play with Lockie Ferguson is anybody’s guess because they have a lot of bowlers. They have Jacob Duffy, who picked up three wickets in the last match, Henry Shipley and Blair Tickner. They can play anyone,” Chopra added.
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