Shane Jurgensen, New Zealand's bowling coach, has promised a fight from his side on the final day of the Kanpur Test. New Zealand need to bat out 98 overs with only six wickets in hand, after losing the first four in 37 overs. They need 341 runs to win, which is nigh impossible.
"We made some adjustments today," Jurgensen said. "I think like that last partnership towards the end today, we've just got to keep fighting. And that's the way we play cricket. We have to fight to the end. There is still six wickets to go and if you get a good partnership going, and we saw that today when India batted, if you get a good partnership you can score at a decent rate, and more importantly you can bat for time. That's our goal, to fight for as long as we can, have a good start in the morning and really try and fight as far as we can. From my experiences in this game tomorrow is a new day. We'll see what happens then."
Jurgensen said it was obviously challenging to play in conditions they are not accustomed to, but said it was important to enjoy the experience in order to get better of the challenges. "Some turn, some don't and some jump," Jurgensen said. "It's just a matter of not feeling the pressure and starting to accept the challenge and play with a smile on your face. What a great opportunity it is tomorrow to come out on the fifth day. If we attack it like that, it's our best opportunity to get through."
One of the keys to the fight is the nuggety wicketkeeper-batsman BJ Watling, who went off the field with a mix of dehydration and back issues. Jurgensen said he was going to bat. "I think he'll be assessed over the next 24 hours," Jurgensen said. "But as far as I'm aware he'll be good to go tomorrow. It was just pretty warm today."
One of the areas where New Zealand could have given themselves less time to survive was by bowling tighter in the second innings, but conceded 377 runs at 3.51 an over. "Obviously they got a few boundaries and batted really well," Jurgensen said. "These are conditions the Indian players are very familiar with and we saw how well they can bat in their conditions. Today we made the necessary adjustments and showed a much-improved performance with the ball. All we can focus on is those positives. Credit to the Indian batsmen. There were times where we bowled well and created pressure but they are very experienced, wore us down and played well."
In Wellington in 2013-14, New Zealand batted out 210 overs in the second innings to salvage a draw against India, but those were totally different conditions. With the ball turning so much, against Indian spinners who are at the top of their game, New Zealand are left needing a miracle to not go to Kolkata trailing in the series.