The best I’ve seen the group train: Suzie Bates on New Zealand’s preparation for the series against Australia

Suzie Bates. © Getty Images

New Zealand batter Suzie Bates has said that the pre-series training bubble provides the team with ample time to get their plans right for the series against Australia.

New Zealand traveled to Brisbane on Thursday (September 9) and are currently training at the Allan Border Field – whilst also under quarantine – for the next couple of weeks before the first T20I on September 26.

“To me, it’s a chance for us to get some really good plans together for Australia,” Bates said on Friday (September 11). “We need to get our bowling plans right, and work on our batting against spin – I think we are gonna face a lot of spin – and also to try and get used to the conditions. We are training at the same ground for the whole time. So yes, it’s gonna be nice to have that time. Usually, we do feel a little bit rushed into the series.”

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The last time the two teams clashed was in a ‘virtual quarter-final’ during the T20 World Cup earlier this year. The visitors lost the match by a mere four runs to be knocked out of another world tournament in the first round. Despite their recent poor form against Australia, Bates believes that things will be different this time around, and that New Zealand will be on the right side of the results.

“I think, if we turn up, it’s going to be a really competitive series, and I think we’re just really desperate to get those wins. We’ve been really close in the last two years – the 50-over series in Australia, and then the World Cup – so I think it’s our turn to get one-up on them,” said the 32-year-old.

Although their first outdoor session was marred by a bit of a drizzle, Bates said the team is raring to go after an extended break.

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“We got out for our first outdoor training, and it rained a little bit, but we just kept fielding in the rain because we wanted to be outside!”

“Everyone’s pretty fizzed having had six months off. Everyone’s been training really hard in the winter… I think it’s the best I’ve seen the group train as a squad.”

“And then, today, back in the nets on grass facing our bowlers, I think everyone was a little bit excited – maybe, trying to get bat on ball – but we sort of settled in after that, and it was just good to get everyone a bat on grass,” she concluded.