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Rediff News  All News  » Cricket » NZ hoping Bracewell's touch rubs off

NZ hoping Bracewell's touch rubs off

January 01, 2004 16:22 IST

New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming is hoping new coach John Bracewell will be able to transfer his English domestic one-day success with Gloucestershire to the international scene against Pakistan.

New Zealand head into the five-match series starting in Auckland on Saturday in desperate need of a morale-boosting victory.

Pakistan beat an under-strength New Zealand side 5-0 at home last month, then won the two match Test series 1-0 in New Zealand after Shoaib Akhtar's pace demolished New Zealand's batsmen in the second Test.

"It's a new beginning for us with John Bracewell taking over," said Fleming. "We'll be looking to him and his very strong work ethic to mould the team into a winning combination.

"He's got some good ideas after working so long and successfully with Gloucestershire."

Bracewell guided the English county to five one-day titles and while his start with the national side has been inauspicious with the Test series loss, he is likely to help New Zealand boost their one-day fortunes.

Pakistan coach Javed Miandad said his side were taking confidence from the Test series into the one-day games.

"We have a good team. We know when we won in Pakistan New Zealand were without some of their best players, so that means nothing now," he said.

"The Test win meant a lot and we gained a lot of confidence from that. Last time we were here (early 2001) we lost the one-dayers which was a real disappointment."

New Zealand were punished by all-rounder Abdul Razzaq with and Yasir Hameed with the bat in Pakistan and the visitors will be undoubtedly boosted by the experience of Younis Khan.

Boosting the all-rounder stakes will be Shoaib Malik, who worked under Bracewell at Gloucestershire, and Azhar Mahmood.

New Zealand are without Nathan Astle, recovering from a knee injury, and have dropped Lou Vincent so Otago opener Craig Cumming is likely to open the batting with Fleming.

Chris Cairns returns after missing the second Test with a virus and also back in the fold after a poor World Cup early last year, is all-rounder Andre Adams.

New Zealand: Stephen Fleming (captain), Craig Cumming, Hamish Marshall, Scott Styris, Craig McMillan, Chris Cairns, Jacob Oram, Brendon McCullum, Daniel Vettori, Kyle Mills, Daryl Tuffey, Ian Butler, Andre Adams (two to be omitted).

Pakistan: Inzamam-ul-Haq (captain), Imran Farhat, Younis Khan, Yasir Hameed, Yousuf Youhana, Abdul Razzaq, Moin Khan, Azhar Mahmood, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Sami, Shoaib Akhtar, Shabbir Ahmed (one to be omitted).

Geoff Young
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