Chennai, October 19
Mild-mannered Mitch Santner rarely hogs the limelight in the New Zealand team but the all-rounder has made a big noise at the World Cup, taking a screamer of a catch against Afghanistan and a milestone 100th ODI wicket.
Santner’s haul of 3/39 helped the Black Caps thrash the Afghans by 149 runs and continue his side’s perfect start to the global showpiece. On the way, he became the second New Zealand spinner to reach 100 wickets in the format, following in the footsteps of his idol, Daniel Vettori. Santner has work to do to catch Vettori, who bowed out of a brilliant career with 305 ODI victims.
Santner feels assessing the conditions there and countering an in-form Rohit Sharma will be vital as they eye the “tough” task of beating India at home.
“We know they’re going to obviously be a challenge at home. They look pretty tough to beat. We’ll have to do our assessment in Dharamsala — see what the wicket’s going to do. There has been a little pace and bounce,” he said.
He added: “I think powerplay with the ball is going to be very important. The way Rohit’s kind of getting them off to a flyer. And so, I think we have to do similar stuff to what we’re doing.” — Agencies