Hardik Pandya and Co. reached Tauranga on Saturday (November 19) for the upcoming second T20I against New Zealand at Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui on Sunday (November 20).
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) uploaded several snapshots of the players and acting head coach VVS Laxman. The Men in Blue were all smiles as they posed for the camera.
The BCCI posted the video on Twitter with the caption:
“Tauranga, here we come!”
It is worth mentioning that the T20I opener in Wellington was abandoned due to rain. The T20 World Cup semi-finalists India and New Zealand will hope for clear skies in their upcoming fixture, with both teams eager to move on from their World Cup exits.
According to accuweather.com, rain is highly likely to take place at Mount Maunganui on Sunday:
“Variable cloudiness; a morning shower in spots, becoming breezy in the afternoon with a couple of soaking showers.”
“NZ tour an opportunity for youngsters to get clarity” – Hardik Pandya
Indian captain Hardik Pandya, meanwhile, has said that the white-ball tour of New Zealand would allow youngsters in the squad to showcase their talent and gain clarity about their roles. He also backed the youngsters to play fearless cricket.
Speaking to Prime Video on Friday, Pandya said:
“If the situation demands, I and the more experienced players will play different roles, as this tour is for the new guys to get more clarity, opportunities and a chance to express themselves.”
“These guys are young by age, not by experience. They have played plenty of IPL cricket and have a good amount of internationals under their belt as well. I think the youngsters of today don’t get intimidated just because they have not played too much international cricket.”
Several senior players, including regular skipper Rohit Sharma, vice-captain KL Rahul, Virat Kohli, and head coach Rahul Dravid, have been rested for the New Zealand tour. They will return for the Bangladesh tour next month.
The likes of Sanju Samson, Shreyas Iyer, Shubman Gill, Umran Malik, and others will be looking to make the most of the opportunity as Team India transitions into a new era in T20 cricket.
India squad for New Zealand T20Is: Hardik Pandya (C), Rishabh Pant (vc & wk), Shubman Gill, Ishan Kishan, Deepak Hooda, Surya Kumar Yadav, Shreyas Iyer, Sanju Samson (wk), W Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh, Harshal Patel, Mohd. Siraj, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Umran Malik.