Kiwis can achieve something great: Cairns
The New Zealand cricket team would approach the triangular one day tournament, which starts this week, with added confidence after their drawn Test series against Australia, all-rounder Chris Cairns said on Monday.
"There is a definite feeling of "Yes, we can achieve something great over here this time'," Cairns said as New Zealand prepared for their day-night match against Australia 'A' in Brisbane on Tuesday.
New Zealand held world number one team Australia to a 0-0 draw in their three-Test series in Australia in November and December.
Returning to Australia after their Christmas break, the Kiwis start the triangular limited overs series against Australia and South Africa with a day-night match against the home team on Friday in Melbourne.
"Australia are going to bounce back pretty tough because I think they let themselves down in that series because they underestimated us," Cairns said.
"There will be none of that relaxing come Melbourne on Friday so we have to be ready for a really big battle but our guys will be buoyed by the previous results.
"There are some individuals in the team who will be more confident ... and I certainly feel a bigger self-confidence within the whole group."
Cairns added that South Africa, thrashed by Australia 3-0 in the Test series which finished last week in Sydney, would be mentally scarred by the experience.
"When you get whacked 3-0 in a Test series you're going to feel a bit down and there are some things that go beyond sporting boundaries which will be influencing them as well," Cairns said.
"It's going to be tough but (you) write South Africa off at your own peril."
Cairns, 31, regarded by the Australians as the most explosive player in the New Zealand side, said he was working hard to maintain that reputation.
"You always want to be the number one player so I put more pressure on myself to perform," he said.
"The experienced players will win the majority of games for you so it's going to be on myself, (captain) Stephen Fleming, Chris Harris and Craig McMillan to lead from the front.
"Whatever combination (Australia) puts on the ground is quite ruthless.
"But it's about pressure and as we showed in the last Test in Perth (where New Zealand fell three wickets short of victory), when pressure is placed on anybody you can get all sorts of results."
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Mail Cricket Editor
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