Indians can do a better job in one-dayers

I have a good reason to believe that India would do much better in the one-dayers in New Zealand than in Tests. This Indian side is much happier off in limited overs cricket.

The field restrictions and the limitations on the number of overs to be sent down by a bowler will obviously work in India's favour.

The one-day series is likely to be well contested.

When I talk about field restrictions, I mean the absence of the slip cordon, so even if the ball is edged, there may be none to catch it. So the pitches may not be such a big factor.

It was a different story in Tests, where the edges were taken in the slip cordon, and men like Bond and Tuffey could bowl long spells. It will be a different battle altogether now, the kind that will suit the Indians.

In this form of the game, Virender Sehwag will obviously be a key man. In one-day cricket, he can get away with his style of batting and can change the course of matches.

The Indian side has performed well in one-day cricket this year, and it is important that it maintains the momentum going into the World Cup.

In this context, it is extremely important for India to deliver in the seven-match series, for if the confidence of the side is dented here, then it might struggle in the World Cup.

Confidence is a big factor in cricket and the side has to gain it. It thus becomes pertinent for the Indians to get their act right.

India will be without the injured Sachin Tendulkar. However, in the past few months, the Indians have performed exceedingly well as a team, even with Tendulkar missing from the line-up.

That should continue to be the attitude of the side, which has the batsmen to do the job.

However, if Sanjay Bangar also misses out in this game then India may have a problem with its lower order.

Bangar was among the runs in the series against the West Indies, making valuable contributions down the order. Somebody else may have to do that job, but who will be that player?

This will be an important series for the Indians from another perspective also.

The dispute over contracts for the ICC tournaments is still to get resolved, and, it is thus becomes vital for the Indians to keep winning, so that they have the sympathy of the people with them. Otherwise, things could get sour.

New Zealand has been known to be a good one-day side and though it may be without world class all-rounder Chris Cairns for the first two games, I expect the host to put up a good performance. We could be in for a very thrilling series.