Without looking at the New Zealand ODI in preparation for the T20 World Cup: Virat Kohli

HAMILTON: captain of India virat Kohli on Tuesday he said his team does not seek to strengthen its preparations for the T20 World Cup in the ODI series against New Zealand as next IPL It is the right platform for it.

However, head coach Ravi Shastri had last month said that the ODIs India play against New Zealand and South Africa (in March) could be a preparatory ground for the T20 World Cup in Australia in October-November.

We have had five T20s already, it's not that we don't have a lot of T20 cricket. We have IPL as well which is going to be a month and a half of T20 cricket. So we will probably use that, I think , because last year (for ODI World Cup) you did not have much opportunity to prepare yourselves apart from the games that were in front of you, said Kohli on the eve of the first ODI here on Wednesday.

But T20s is very different, as I said. IPL is probably the most competitive tournament you can ask for as a collective and guys will look to get into that frame of mind in that tournament and not this early in a 50-over format because you don't want to play in a different way.

The employer considers it important to give equal respect to each format.

You have to respect the format, you have to play according to the rhythm of the game for more than 50 years and, as I have also talked about the combination. It's about men settling in their roles and repeating that game after game so they know I played this in this format, I have to play this in T20s or similarly in Test cricket.

These things are all about creating good habits for different formats and then being able to switch between them. So no, we are not looking at this series as preparation for T20 World Cup. IPL is going to be the right platform for that.

India go into the three-match series high on confidence, having whitewashed the Black Caps 5-0 in the T20 series. Kohli's team had also beaten New Zealand 4-1 in ODIs last year before going down in T20s.

"The last time around, when we played here, we dominated the first three games. Lost the fourth and came back in the fifth one again. We felt we had more time to work out our plans in the ODIs actually. The T20 format was something that suited New Zealand more as they could play some explosive cricket and really did come after our side but in one-day cricket, we have played some really hard-fought series."

He expects New Zealand to bounce back strongly following the drubbing in T20s.

"That's something that we need to be wary of, that we keep believing in our own plans and ride those pockets of pressure and eventually turn the situation around for ourselves. That's something that we've always known with the New Zealand side that they'll not give up and keep finding a way to come back into the game," he said.

Overcoming India has been quite poor in recent times and constantly low standards have become a concern despite flashes of brightness. Kohli said the team's management had taken note of this and that it focused on raising the field aspect along with batting and bowling.

If you look at the average age of this team, it is 27 maximum. Therefore, we should be playing much better than we have. I think the field standards in general were not that good anywhere. T20 cricket can happen because the game is very fast.

Then, once you enter a nervous zone, it is very difficult to get out of it. It is moving very fast and the ball keeps coming to you. Even on a cricket day, we have had performances that we are not proud of and there is no hiding from that.

Kohli said it is imperative that due attention be paid to the field.

You certainly expect a young group of boys who are in good shape and very, very good fielders to do the work for you in the field collectively and not just concentrate on hitting or bowling.

It's about taking all three skills seriously and committing to them like bowling or hitting. Things can be taken for granted. That's something we want to get away from, he added.

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