Wins against Pakistan lifted our morale before World Cup: Vettori

Nagpur: The two recent wins against Pakistan at home has helped New Zealand overcome the past defeats and restore their confidence ahead of the World Cup, skipper Daniel Vettori said on Friday.

"Defeats in the last three series has affected our morale but the wins against Pakistan has restored our confidence," Vettori told reporters here.

New Zealand were thrashed by Bangladesh and India in the 50-over contests when they recently visited the sub-continent and also lost to Pakistan 2-3 in their last outing in the run-up to cricket`s showpiece event starting February 19.

Vettori said the experience of having toured Bangladesh and India recently will come in handy for his team during the World Cup.

"We have been playing in the sub-continent for sometime and that has helped us gain more experience," he said.

On the presence of John Wright, who had a successful stint as the coach of the Indian team that made the final of the 2003 Cup in South Africa, with the squad, Vettori said, "John is an important asset for us. He has vast experience, knowledge of local conditions, crowd and people and therefore he will be a good coach for New Zealand."

Asked about the team`s prospect in the World Cup, he said, "We will focus on every match." Vettori said the hard-hitting Brendon McCullum will open the batting for the side and added that the team may also use
the services of spinner Luke Woodcock to begin the bowling.

The Black Caps, who arrived in Nagpur yesterday, had a training session at the Vidarbha Cricket Association stadium at Jamtha, about 18 kms near here.

They will take-on Ireland in a day-night warm-up match tomorrow.