Tim Southee wary of 'dangerous players' in Team India

When New Zealand takes on India in the final of the World Test Championship,Tim Southee would want to gain upper hand over the star-studded Indian batting line-up.

New Zealand bowlers Neil Wagner, Tim Southee and Kyle Jamieson during a nets session at Lord's Cricket Ground in London.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Tim Southee considers Virat Kohli a ‘modern day great’ and loves watching Rohit Sharma bat. But when New Zealand takes on India in the final of the World Test Championship, starting Friday, the fast bowler would want to gain upper hand over the star-studded Indian batting line-up.

“Virat is one of the best to play the game. He is definitely one of the modern day greats. But not just him, we know there are so many dangerous players in this Indian team. We have to be on the top of our game as a bowling unit as we know how dangerous the Indian batters can be,” Southee said in a media interaction on Wednesday.

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“Rohit (too) is a tremendous player in all the three formats. Personally, I like watching him bat and take away the game from the opposition. As a bowling group (we know), that is a dangerous batting line-up throughout. Rohit is one of the many good batters that we know we have to build our game against,” he added.

While there are plans in place for Kohli and Rohit, New Zealand is also cautious about the Indian youngsters - Rishabh Pant or Shubman Gill. “It is an exciting batting line-up - a mix of experience and a couple of young guys have come up and played with freedom and excitement. There is plenty of footage, we will discuss the footage and plan which will hopefully work in the final.”

New Zealand comes into the final after a Test series win against England and Southee feels that would boost the team’s confidence. “We have had a great start to the tour. It’s always good fun to come to the UK and play. We played two Tests against England, which has been pretty good for us. It has been a great preparation leading to the final. Number of guys performed well in those two Tests and there will be a couple of good days training today and tomorrow. We are all looking forward to what is the ultimate goal of the tour,” he added.

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While it is hot and humid in Southampton currently, rain is in the forecast over the next few days. “We have had two beautiful days, but there is a lot of rain forecast, but whether that hits us or not, we don't know. We are trying to control the things that we can control,” he said.

New Zealand has not won an ICC tournament since 2000 and Southee is looking forward to end the trophy drought. “It’s been a long time since we won the Champions Trophy in 2000 and we have come very close in the last couple of (ICC tournaments - in 2015 and 2019 World Cups). At the start of the WTC two years ago, everyone wanted to be here. Now, it’s the final two and we know that it will be a tough week. Having a number of guys that have been close to winning an ICC event in the side (is a good thing), but for us, it is about going out and doing our job,” he said.

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