England tour of India - Cricket: Were prepared to tackle Indians at home: Knight
Published: Wednesday, January 16, 2002, 23:53 [IST]
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Kolkata: Buoyed by his spectacular showing in Zimbabwe last October, England's dashing One-day opening bat Nick Knight exuded confidence that his team could win the coming series against India, though he admitted that the outing was tough.''We are confident. We had a good series against Zimbabwe. If we can outplay the Indians here that will be a real lift for the team,'' Knight said.The left-hander, a key member in England's limited over side, bagged the man-of-the-series award against Zimbabwe totalling 302 runs at a fairy-tale 100 plus average to fashion England's 5-0 triumph against the African rival.Fully aware that he needed to play a vital role to fulfil coach Duncan Fetcher's plans of upstaging India in the coming six-match fixture, Knight is in no mood to rest on past laurels.''Things went for me in Zimbabwe. But that's in the past. It's a new test for me now. I have to meet the mark as quick as I can,'' he said.Knight, the only member of the current team to have played in India in the past when he toured with the England 'A' side in 1994-95, was hoping to bank on that experience in the coming series. Warning his teammates that the series would be tough, he said ''India is a strong side on home soil. The conditions are different, and the pitches difficult for us. It's going to be tricky.''Knight said his team needed to get used to the conditions fast to turn the tables on the hosts. "We cannot afford to go two or three down initially. We need to play well from the first game. We have to get into top condition without delay."The 32-year old Warwickshire player, who made his One-day International debut in 1996, said the English team was a good mixture of youth and experience. "The youngsters have gained a lot of experience from the Zimbabwe trip. Plus, speedsters Darren Gough and Andy Caddick, as also some of the front-ranking batsmen, have been around for a long time."Knight said the English side was practicing techniques in the last few days, which they would use against the Indians. "We must try to get as much practice as we can. We have come here much in advance and now it's up to us to make the most of it."He said the team was preparing well and coming out with plans to tackle the Indians.