New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor believes that playing India on their soil is one of the biggest challenges for any team. But he refused to divulge details of his plans to tackle the hosts’ main off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin in the upcoming Test series. India and opening World Test champion team New Zealand will start the two-Test series in Kanpur from November 25. The series will be part of the second edition of the World Test Championship.
Taylor said, ‘Definitely it will be a challenge, but I am ready for it. I think there is no more difficult challenge than playing India on their soil or playing Australia overseas. These are probably the two biggest challenges in Test cricket at the moment. But as a team we are ready for it and we know we are the ‘underdog’ (Chuperustam) but we are ready to do well. Whenever you play India on their soil, you are always the ‘underdog’ whether it is the number one team in the world or not.
Veteran batsman Taylor said tackling the Indian spin duo of Ashwin and Axar Patel will be the key thing for New Zealand in the Test series. When asked what is his plan to deal with Ashwin’s bowling, he said in a ‘virtual press conference’, ‘I do not want to reveal my strategy here. I don’t know which players India decides to field, Axar Patel played a big role against England.
He said, ‘They will field three spinners or two spinners, definitely Ashwin will be one of them. He is a very good bowler, especially in these conditions, and how we play him will play an important role in how the series goes. He also advised the New Zealand batsmen to be cautious of India’s fast bowling attack. Taylor said that fast bowling is always important with the new ball and reverse swing. But here spin often plays a big role so if we assume that only spin will be important then we can be clumsy.