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Indian batters can handle Shaheen Afridi

Shaheen Afridi

With less than two months till the World Cup, New Zealand’s pace leader Tim Southee acknowledges that the scheduling of T20 competitions has made it challenging for teams to coordinate resources, but asserts that the next Asia Cup will play a significant role in India’s preparations for the championship.

Sanju Samson was included as a stand-by player for India’s extended 17-member squad for the Asia Cup, which begins on August 30, as KL Rahul, the preferred wicketkeeper-batter at No. 5, has developed a niggle in addition to his initial injury.

“I suppose the ideal scenario would be to play as much as possible as a team and to prepare for a World Cup. But if you look at the Asia Cup, I believe there is no better event to rally your squad around. I anticipate that will play a significant role in the Indian team’s preparation for the Asia Cup,” Southee said to the media on Monday outside the Ceat Cricket Rating Award ceremony in this city.

In addition, Southee encouraged Indian batters to develop strategies for left-arm pace while noting the troublemakers Trent Boult of England and Shaheen Shah Afridi of Pakistan.

In addition, Southee encouraged Indian batters to develop strategies for left-arm pace while noting the troublemakers Trent Boult of England and Shaheen Shah Afridi of Pakistan.

“I don’t know what it is, but having a left-armer was always useful — something that perhaps people don’t encounter much. Shaheen Shah and Trent Boult are two excellent bowlers who have given many players trouble over the years, as you stated, the Kiwi bowler added.

“I don’t believe there is much of a problem. I have no doubt that the Indian players, who are world-class athletes, will have effective game plans for every bowler they face.

The 34-year-old expressed the hope that Kane Williamson will be healthy in time for the World Cup.

“Kane is making every effort to ensure that he will be well for the World Cup. If he’ll be available or not won’t be known until closer to the World Cup. I suppose the best course of action for Kane is to wait and see.

He’s arguably one of our best cricketers ever, even though we are such a small cricketing nation. He will be missed by any team without him on it. If he doesn’t, it gives an opportunity for someone else to step up, Southee said. “We’re hopeful his rehabilitation goes well and that he’s going to be okay.

“Over the last couple of years, we’ve been able to build some depth from some players, and I’m sure we’ll find someone who can fill that role,” he continued.

To complete their preparations for the major tournament, the Kiwi bowler said all nations will try to have their World Cup players spend the upcoming weeks together.

New Zealand will play England in the World Cup opening match on October 5 in Ahmedabad following a bilateral series of four T20Is and as many ODIs played abroad.

With T20 cricket, juggling the many formats, and busy schedules, it has been difficult for all sides to get their players started and live together for an extended amount of time, but I expect that will change in the coming months as we approach the World Cup.

Southee also anticipated that the New Zealand players that participated in the IPL this year will make advantage of their familiarity with the fields and weather.

The New Zealanders who participated in the IPL earlier this year “would have gained as much knowledge as they can about the grounds and surfaces that we’ll be playing on every time you’ve come to these parts of the world,” he said.

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