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‘India have a score to settle vs NZ’

Bangalore: Issuing a warning to New Zealand ahead of their tour of India in September, coach John Wright Sunday indicated that Sourav Ganguly’s boys are keen to avenge the thrashing they received at the hands of the Kiwis during their December-January trip there.

“We have a few scores to settle (with New Zealand). We are looking forward to it,” Wright said, when asked about the two-Test home series.

India lost both Test matches in New Zealand during the tour in December-January. Both were low-scoring games on pitches which drew a lot of flak from the visitors as well as home ‘experts’.

In the one-day series which followed, the Black Caps triumphed 5-2 despite a sterling performance by Virender Sehwag who smashed two centuries.

The New Zealander, who has been in charge of the Indian team for two and a half years, felt the ‘lead-up’ programme is going to be important.

“Sure, we will be well prepared. I have to talk to the BCCI president about the lead-up programme along with the selectors.

“I am looking forward to the lead-up programme and playing programme,” he said.

Referring to India’s good track record at home, Wright said his team will work hard and be well prepared.

“Obviously the boys had some time off after the World Cup and they should be hungry for runs and wickets.”

Asked whether it felt any different coaching India against New Zealand, the former Kiwi captain said: “My job is to coach India and get results for India. That’s the only way I have to think about it.”

Regarding reports that Jawagal Srinath is considering quitting the game, Wright said it was the fast bowler’s personal decision.

“At the end of the day, Sri is big enough and old enough to make the decisions himself.”

On India’s four-Test series against Australia in December-January, Wright said: “We are going to have to raise the level of our game. We need to get results.”

Wright is here to help Sandeep Patil — coach of the India A team, which is scheduled to tour England. The 18-day conditioning camp for the Shiv Sundar Das-led team began Sunday.

(PTI)

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