New Zealand captain not unduly worried despite reversal against South Africa
Ross Taylor, the New Zealand skipper, wasn’t too disappointed after his illness-hit team succumbed to a nine-run defeat to South Africa.
With Kyle Mills, Jacob Oram, Tim Southee and Daniel Vettori all out with stomach bugs, Taylor’s brisk 75 couldn’t help his side avoiding defeat against one of the pre-event favourites.
“I guess it’s what warm-up games are all about. It’s about trying to get as much out of it – it’s a bonus if you win. You would rather win the World Cup games. We had a few illnesses leading into the match so we only had 11 players there, but the whole squad has had a game so far, so we’re looking forward to the start of the World Cup.”
Taylor admitted he was pleased with his batting, smashing seven sixes in his 42-ball innings. “In Twenty20 you can score some runs and it can be pretty hit and miss, but it was nice to hit a few out of the middle,” he said. “It’s only a warm-up game though so you don’t want to get too carried away.”
New Zealand travels to Kandy on Tuesday, ahead of its opening match on Friday against Bangladesh, before Taylor will get his chance to repeat his heroics at Pallekele against Pakistan on Sunday.
In last year’s ICC Cricket World Cup, Taylor showed one of the most remarkable displays of late-over hitting in a memorable century on his birthday, and he said he would be happy to see history repeat itself.
“It’s not my birthday this time, but it does have fond memories for me. We are in a pretty tough pool – Bangladesh and Pakistan will both be tough in Pallekele – but hopefully we can replicate some of our one-day World Cup form there,” said Taylor.