WTC final: “5 million playing against 1.4 billion, to get a side that can compete consistently is a testament to everybody”- New Zealand star Ross Taylor
Ross Taylor lauded everyone involved in the New Zealand cricket team’s setup for competing consistently at the top level in spite of them being a small nation in terms of population. Taylor believes the tag of underdogs suits them well and added that the Kiwis play better with their backs against the wall.
New Zealand might not have won a major ICC event in recent times, but they have made the finals of the last 2 ODI World Cups. Kane Williamson’s men are once again involved in the summit clash of a big tournament, this time in the World Test Championship final against India.
In a clip released by the ICC on Twitter, Ross Taylor stated that the Kiwis enjoy being the underdogs.
“5 million playing against 1.4 billion. For us to even get a side that can compete consistently is a testament to everybody. We love being the underdogs, that’s just the Kiwi psyche. I think we play better when our backs are against the wall. Being favorites probably doesn’t sit with us as well as it does with other teams. We like to be the underdogs and go under the radar a little,” said the New Zealand star.
The first session at Southampton was washed out, and conditions look bleak so far on Day 1 of the World Test Championship final.
“Everyone talks about their favorites but very rarely are New Zealand mentioned”- Tim Southee
Fast bowler Tim Southee highlighted how New Zealand are very rarely talked about as favorites going into a major ICC event. However, the seamer added that it doesn’t bother them as they only try to concentrate on what’s happening inside the team environment.
“You always turn up at World Cups and ICC events, everyone talks about their favorite but very rarely are New Zealand mentioned. But it’s fine with us, it doesn’t bother us as a side. We worry about what’s going on inside our environment and what we are trying to achieve as a side. We always turn at every event trying to win it like every other side. It’s nice to be consistent in our performances over the last few events,” Southee said in a video shared by the ICC
Despite doing well in ICC events over the last few years, the Blackcaps have failed to go the distance, falling short on the final few hurdles. Their only major ICC event triumph remains the 2000-01 ICC Champions Trophy (then ICC knockout Trophy) which they won under the captaincy of Stephen Fleming.
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