New Zealand news January 24, 2011

Bennett happy in supporting role

ESPNcricinfo staff

Hamish Bennett, the New Zealand fast-bowler, has insisted he's happy to support Tim Southee and James Franklin despite being an obvious new-ball candidate after his heroics in New Zealand's nine-wicket defeat of Pakistan in the first ODI.

He and Southee were expected to open the bowling but allrounder Franklin took the new ball with Bennett second change. The formula clearly worked well as Southee finished with man-of-the-match figures of 5 for 33 and Bennett chipping in with three wickets of his own.

New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori said a horses-for-courses approach was being taken and with the history of bowler-friendly conditions Queenstown, Southee and Franklin's ability to swing the new ball would likely see them open again in Wednesday's second match.

"I think we'll look to use James, particularly in Queenstown where the wicket probably suits the swing and seam bowler," Vettori said. "When we get to the likes of Hamilton and Napier, maybe we'll revisit it on the flatter wickets."

Vettori felt that Bennett, who finished with 3 for 26 from eight overs in just his third one-day international, was better suited to first or second change.

"I think that's where he's most comfortable, but if he keeps bowling as well as he did [on Saturday], there's no reason why he can't step up into that opening role. We just hope he keeps performing that way."

Bennett, 23, is by far the quickest bowler in the team and generated good pace and bounce throughout the opening ODI. He was happy to start with the older ball in the circumstances but hopes to get hold of the new ball in future and feels he can generate more pace as he settles into the team.

"I think Franky and Timmy do a good job swinging the new ball so we've got to use that, especially with the conditions we had [on Saturday]," he said. "I probably rely more on bounce so if I can use that and bowl a heavy nut it's going to help."

"I've never bowled [at the stadium] before so it was quite funny, it always felt like you were bowling into [the wind], so I found that quite tough. Hopefully in Queenstown I have the wind at my back. I think in Bangladesh last year I got clocked just under 145kmh so if I can get the conditions going my way, hopefully a bit quicker but who knows? If it's not in the right area it doesn't really matter, does it?"

New Zealand routed Pakistan with their batsmen chasing down the modest target of 125 in just 17.2 overs. The new opening partnership of Jesse Ryder and Martin Guptill surged with an 84-run stand in 10 overs as John Wright's first move for the ODI team succeeded. Ryder returned to form after a difficult Test series with 55 from 34 balls, while Guptill ended 40 not out and Ross Taylor was unbeaten on 23.

After an 11-match losing streak last year Vettori was pleased to return to winning ways but cautioned the conditions were nothing like what the side will face come the World Cup next month. "It's a difficult one because we're not going to play on any wickets like that at the World Cup but this series is about getting that winning feeling back."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Irfan on January 26, 2011, 6:32 GMT

    i think its time to introduce player like ahmed shazad . my combination for 3rd odi is 1 hafeez 2 shahzad 3 younas 4 umar 5 afridi 6 kamran 7misbah 8 razak 9 wahab 10 rehman 11 gul . NO AKHTAR

  • Khair ul on January 25, 2011, 22:08 GMT

    I was disappointed that Pak didn't have a Plan B the other day when NZ bowlers got on top. One of the batsman at least should have tried to go after them to try to spoil their rhythm. They were losing wickets anyway doing not much, so it was worth a try.

  • ashraf on January 25, 2011, 13:48 GMT

    Swinging condition exposes batting techniques of Pakistan, need to be patient on these kind of conditions.

  • Cricinfouser on January 25, 2011, 3:19 GMT

    i think mohammad yousuf should comr in the t20 world cup 2011 we need some sieneirs to win the game.And waqar younis should take shaild afridi out of the world cup

  • Cricinfouser on January 25, 2011, 3:16 GMT

    i think mohammmad yousuf should be brought back or pakis might win by a miracle and afrdid has to get his act together or the dream of captain of WC is over

  • Dummy4 on January 25, 2011, 1:37 GMT

    Vettori`s comment sums it up "we're not going to play on any wickets like that at the World Cup" and like earlier in india and bagladesh, they will again be hammered badly...expect Pakistan to fight back and get back on track!! PAKISTAN ZINDABAD!!

  • Venkatakrishna on January 24, 2011, 13:12 GMT

    current Nz team might be the only team which plays in true spirit in the last two years.

  • Peter on January 24, 2011, 12:39 GMT

    Horses for Courses.. glad to see Vettori mentioning that, I just hope now that the selectors will realise that horses for courses also applies to batsmen.

    Certain batters simply dont like the slower pitches as they rely on the ball coming onto the bat for timing, other batters enjoy a good slog combined with noodling singles and slow pitches suits them just fine.

    Pick 15 of your best players and play them according to the conditions, batters included. It wont take long to look at the stats and see who likes to play on what.

    Go Black Caps!

  • RAM on January 24, 2011, 9:47 GMT

    Good to see NZ back in winning ways........Good Luck NZ......Hope they win the series before getting into World cup..........

  • Faizan on January 24, 2011, 8:04 GMT

    nICe Bounce Back From Nz... Now will have to Concentrate on Others remaininG ODIS Against Pakistan.

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