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April 6, 2009
No damp squib here with New Zealand wicketkeeper Brendon McCullum saying the team will want to bat out the final day at Wellington instead of rain helping them draw the match. "You can't pray for rain or you can't expect rain to get you out of the situation," McCullum said. "For us, if we wake up next morning to find a big blue overhead, we have got a fight on our hand, and that is what we got to stand up to," he said.
He said he was not worried about what the Indian strategy would be tomorrow to win the Test. "Rather than worry for them, you need to talk to your team," he said. "From our perspective, we have got to try and last three sessions. That is what our goal is. Good for them that they have got confidence on their side. We have to try and learn to be that confident as well. If we do that we will grow our own confidence."
Clearly, McCullum's statements indicate that New Zealand are not in a position to win but he said they could at least salvage some pride by saving the match. "It was disappointing being bowled out for 200 in first innings which has left us in a pretty tough situation," he said. "The top order will be pretty disappointed as they missed out again today. We got a partnership going late this afternoon [Ross Taylor and James Franklin]. Hopefully, with a couple of batters still to come, we can get out of this with a draw.
"We've got to believe we can do it. Tomorrow is an opportunity for the guys to stand up and show some character. If we can get out of this match with a draw, it will be great. We know we may not level the series, but we have to show some character."
McCullum said he was surprised with India's delayed declaration in the second innings, despite the possibility of rain playing spoilsport tomorrow and denying the visitors a win, which would ensure a 2-0 margin.
"We couldn't work out their strategy after tea yesterday or this morning," he said. "Possibly they were trying to prise a wicket out of us, or were trying to lull us into some false sense of security. Maybe that was their plan. I guess that is not the plan we thought they would come out with after tea yesterday. But I guess when you are in front of the game, you can always play with different kinds of gameplans."
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