Cricket – Second Test – England v New Zealand – Edgbaston Stadium, Birmingham, Britain – June 10, 2021. — Reuters/File
  • New Zealand is smarting from their defeat by Pakistan and need a win against Kohli’s “Men in Blue” to revive their campaign.
  • “The way Shaheen bowled the other night was, for a left-armer, I thought it was amazing,” Boult tells reporters.
  • The bowler says there’s always a lot of excitement that comes with playing India.

DUBAI: Trent Boult has seen how Shaheen Afridi swung the ball to wreck India’s top order at the T20 World Cup and the New Zealand pace spearhead is plotting something similar in Sunday’s crucial contest against Virat Kohli’s men.

Left-arm pacer Afridi dismissed Rohit Sharma for a golden duck with a searing, swinging delivery and, in his next over, bowled the other opener, KL Rahul, to set up Pakistan’s 10-wicket romp in the Group II blockbuster in Dubai.

New Zealand are also smarting from their defeat by Pakistan and need a win against Kohli’s “Men in Blue” to revive their campaign.

“The way Shaheen bowled the other night was, for a left-armer, I thought it was amazing,” Boult told reporters on Saturday.

“There’s quality batsmen in that Indian lineup and early wickets are definitely the focus for us as a bowling group.”

“Hopefully, from my point of view, it swings around a little bit and I can mirror what Shaheen did the other night.”

Kane Williamson’s team will draw inspiration from their edge over India in global tournaments in recent years, having prevailed in the semi-finals of the 2019 ODI World Cup and the final of the inaugural World Test Championship in June this year.

Boult insisted they cannot afford to lower the guard against the 2007 champions, who are seeking to revive their own campaign after being thumped by arch-rivals Pakistan.

“There’s always a lot of excitement that comes with playing India,” the bowler said.

“We’ve probably enjoyed some success over the last few years in these ICC tournaments but it definitely doesn’t mean that we’re going to treat them lightly or anything like that.

“It’s a big game for both teams. I’m sure both are looking forward to putting on a good show,” added the 32-year-old.


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