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February 9, 2010
With the one-dayers against Bangladesh in the bag, New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori has set his sights on the tougher assignment of hosting Australia for a full series staring February 26. Australia are due to arrive in New Zealand in a fortnight to compete for two Tests, five ODIs and a couple Twenty20s and Vettori wished his players would take the momentum of a series win and raise it for their trans-Tasman rivals.
"There's a series win and we need to finish that off," he said ahead of the final match against Bangladesh. "There are high expectations from ourselves, as well as everyone else around, to make sure our performances are of a particular standard. So far we've been able to meet those.
"If we want to compete against Australia it is an area of our game we have to make sure is almost perfect otherwise it is very difficult to stop very good teams. We are bowling well with the new ball but we need a lot of improvement in our batting, and our fielding."
New Zealand blooded two debutants against Bangladesh, the Wellington fast bowler Andy McKay and the Central Districts opening batsman Peter Ingram, and both have done well so far. Having already praised McKay for his speed and accuracy in the second ODI in Napier, Vettori said getting more out of the pair - aged 31 and 29 respectively - in the years ahead.
"Hopefully we can see another four or five years of them. They've got potential to have pretty sound international careers with a bit of longevity. Once you get to that age where you really understand your game it makes it easier taking the step up."
Along with fellow selectors Mark Greatbatch - also the team's coach - and Glenn Turner, Vettori also said he had a fair idea of what New Zealand wish to achieve during the ICC World Twenty20 in the Caribbean next month. "We've got a squad of 20 in our heads and it's tough to whittle that down to 15, particularly when guys come off injuries. But the more players can put their hand up and question us that has to be good."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Shorter tours don't allow you time to get into form, and domestic cricket isn't demanding enough