Fleming believes Black Caps have turned corner
by Cricket Archive Staff Reporter
DateLine: 25th January 2007
Buoyed by his side's first win of the triangular one-day series, New
Zealand captain Stephen Fleming believes his team is poised to build
momentum as the World Cup approaches.
Their 90-run win over England on Tuesday ended a run of four straight
one-day international losses for the Black Caps.
Their recent indifferent form has seen the Kiwis criticised for their
rotational policy in one-day games and while Fleming conceded his
team's results had been disappointing, he said the focus was on laying
the foundation for a successful World Cup campaign.
"We've been doing a lot of good things off the field, but it has been
worth nothing because our performances have let all that down," he said
in Adelaide on Tuesday. "It has been pretty frustrating for all the
people at home because we have played a pretty poor brand of cricket.
But if we can get a bit of confidence into it - you've got the likes of
(Scott) Styris, Jacob coming back in and performing the way he did,
Kyle Mills coming back and the guys that have been competing over here
- then we are not in bad shape."
Fleming, whose captaincy was also criticised by former teammate Adam
Parore, said he believed the win over England, with powerful
all-rounder Jacob Oram returning from injury with a man-of-the-match
performance, showed the Black Caps were on the right track.
"We are hoping to get a couple more wins and then get a little bit of
momentum towards the end of this tournament," he said. "It would be
great to make the finals of this tournament and then we have another
tough series with Australia at home. Then when you hit the World Cup
you are pretty sure you have covered all your bases and that has really
been our plan over the last six months."
Fleming said New Zealand's top order frailty was still a concern and
the skipper admitted he was one of the main culprits, his 20 against
England continuing his dry run in Australia.
With Oram and Mills joining the squad in Australia, and Styris also
expected to do so, the Black Caps have sent 31-year-old all-rounder
Andre Adams home without playing a game in the tri-series.
New Zealand general manager Lindsay Crocker said Adams was sent home to
get some match practice.
"Because Andre offers similar skills as Jacob, Kyle and James Franklin
he was going to struggle to get game time," Crocker said. "This way he
can get home and play some cricket and remain in contention for the
World Cup in the West Indies in March and April."