Injury-hit Kiwis take day off from practice

Ahmedabad: Faced with injury woes and struggling to hit the right notes in the ongoing World Cup, the New Zealand cricket team on Sunday took a day off from their scheduled practice session at the Sardar Patel Stadium, Motera, here.

While experienced fast bowler Kyle Mills has missed the team`s first two World Cup matches following a back problem, skipper Daniel Vettori is nursing a hamstring and veteran all-rounder Scott Styris has a bruised finger.

The Black Caps, after their defeat at the hands of defending champions Australia in Nagpur, arrived here on Saturday for their match against Zimbabwe on March 4.

They were scheduled to practise this morning, but cancelled the session.

The team`s media manager, Ellery Tappin, said the session was put off but did not state any reasons for the same.

He, however, said that the team would practice on Monday afternoon.

On Mills, Tappin said, "He is doing fine and recovering well."

Asked about Vettori, Tappin said the skipper was dealing with it well and was doing fine.

He further said that all the players, including Mills and Vettori, would be practicing on Monday.

Though the 31-year-old Mills has been around since 2001 and has taken 186 ODI wickets, he has played only one World Cup match in 2003 and missed the 2007 edition due to a serious knee injury.

Following the defeat against Australia, Vettori had expressed concern about the batting line-up, but injury to him and experienced players like Mills, and all-rounder Styris is likely to pose more trouble for the Kiwis.

Vettori had said that there was a need to strengthen the batting and he would be using the week-long break before the next match against Zimbabwe to recover, regroup and rebuild the team.


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