White Ferns make detour, this time to Bangalore

New Zealand's women team took a stopover at Mumbai from Nagpur, en route to Bangalore. Having travelled for 12 hours to reach Nagpur from Mohali earlier, the captain Suzie Bates had said, "We just want to make the most of the flying time in India. Hopefully it would be just one halt in Mumbai."

Suzie Bates (left) with coach Haidee Tiffen at a press conference in Nagpur.   -  PTI

The White Ferns, as the New Zealand women’s team is known, will have plenty of time to recover and prepare for its last Group ‘A’ league match against South Africa at the Chinnaswamy Stadium on Saturday, March 26. After scoring a crushing victory against Meg Lanning’s Australia at Nagpur on Monday, the team travelled to Bangalore, first flying to Mumbai and then changing an aircraft to Bangalore on Tuesday.

The BCCI is responsible for travel plans in India for the ICC event and, perhaps odd air connectivity between Nagpur and Bangalore forced the New Zealand team to take a detour. Its captain Suzie Bates and coach Haidee Tiffin were aghast at a 12-hour ordeal from Mohali to Nagpur and that someone could schedule a crazy travel plan for an international team.

But Suzie’s demeanour changed after her team’s third straight win in the ICC World Twenty20; she in fact took her joke quotient up - at the post match press conference - by a few notches saying: “We just want to make the most of the flying time in India. Hopefully it would be just one halt in Mumbai.”

New Zealand has won all its three matches against Sri Lanka, Ireland and Australia and should be hoping to top its group. It was not in best shape when it arrived in Nagpur on March 19 after the previous night’s match against Ireland in Mohali. From checking out of their hotel in Chandigarh to checking in at the team hotel in Nagpur, it took the White Ferns exactly 12 hours, after four flights and change of aircraft once at Bangalore. Their flight plan was Chandigarh-New Delhi-Bangalore-Mumbai-Nagpur.