We have a fair idea of New Zealand bowling attack: Pujara

Mumbai: India Test batsman Cheteshwar Pujara said that New Zealand bowling attack won’t present a challenge for India batsmen in the World Test Championship (WTC) final in Southampton since the match will be played on neutral venue and the Indians have a fair idea of the opposition attack.

The WTC final is scheduled to take place on June 18-22.

“Their bowling attack is very well-balanced. We have faced their bowlers before and have a fair idea of how they operate, the angles they use and we will be prepared,” said the No. 3 batsman while speaking to the Times of India.

New Zealand had won the last Test series against India, winning it 2-0 at home. But Pujara said that the neutral venue will give both sides equal chance.

“I don’t think so (New Zealand will have an advantage). When we played the Kiwis in 2020, it was in their backyard. That won’t be the case in the WTC final since it’s a neutral venue for both the teams. None of the teams will have a home advantage. We have our bases covered and if we play to our potential — then we have the ability to beat any side in the world,” said Pujara.

The Saurashtra batsman, who was the star performer in Australia, helping India win two back-to-back series, said India’s loss to England in Southampton in 2018 won’t have a negative effect.

“It is difficult to assess one particular game. We were in a commanding position (against England in 2018) and had our chances. But I won’t assess that Test with the WTC final because we are playing a different side this time. The only thing which we need to take from any game is the positive aspects and that’s what I always believe in,” he added.

India were in a good position to win that Test but eventually lost by 60 runs as off-spinner Moeen Ali wreaked havoc with a nine-wicket haul.


Asia Cup T20 tournament postponed indefinitely

Colombo: The Asia Cup T20 tournament which was scheduled to be held in June in Sri Lanka has been postponed indefinitely due to Covid-19 pandemic.

“Due to the prevailing situation, it will not be possible to play the tournament in June this year,” Ashley de Silva, the Sri Lanka Cricket chief executive, told media on Wednesday.

The tournament which was originally scheduled to be held in September, 2020 in Sri Lanka was moved to June, 2021 due to Covid-19.

However, the unrelenting pandemic has played spoilsport again. The tournament is likely to be moved to next year.

A formal statement from the Asian Cricket Council is, however, yet to come.

The 2020 edition has been shifted a number of times. Initially, Pakistan was supposed to host it.

However, due to tensions between India and Pakistan, the tournament was moved to the island nation.

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