New Zealand captain Kane Williamson Downplaying concerns about his fitness ahead of the Black Caps’ T20 World Cup opening match against Pakistan on October 26, he on Thursday described his hamstring injury as “minor”.
A day after New Zealand coach Gary Stead expressed confidence about his availability, Williamson also struck a note of optimism ahead of the match in Sharjah. The tournament starts on 17 October.
“Minor, (it) is fine, making good progress. So, no complaints,” he replied to a query during a conference call with the media organized by the ICC.
Talking about his team’s preparations, Williamson said that it is great to have former fast bowler Shane Bond in the support staff.
Bond will exclusively work with the spinners of the national team during the tournament.
“With all the experience he has got from all over the world and especially with Mumbai (Indians in IPL) in this part of the world (UAE), he is very good at what he does,” said Willimson.
“…he’ll help our bowling coach and do everything possible, so he’ll be around the group anyway, he’s a lot of fun,” he added.
Bond, who joined the team as the fourth coach, is assisting bowling coach Shane Jurgensen as well as working with the team’s spinners.
He has been the bowling coach of five-time IPL champions Mumbai Indians.
New Zealand, who have won the inaugural ICC World Test Championship, have always entered ICC events with the under-dog tag, but that didn’t matter for Williamson.
“I mean tags are tags. Everyone’s got different, so it’s okay… there are match-winners and anybody can beat anybody on a day, so it’s a very big deal for the spectators. Exciting prospect, no doubt about it,” he said.
According to Williamson, it is important to adjust quickly in events like the T20 World Cup, when the sides face different opposition at different venues,” he said.
“… it’s a very small tournament, so you want to get into the ground running and try and get a little bit of momentum quickly. In events like this, when you play with different opposition teams So, every three days at different places, there are some changes that have to be done very quickly.
“…it’s exciting to be here with the New Zealand team and learn more about the group,” Williamson said.