Southampton: New Zealand batting stalwart Ross Taylor on Tuesday said that his team's new status as the world No.1 will mean little in the World Test Championship (WTC) final against India, who have been the No.1 side for quite a few years.
"It is just really exciting to be here. Playing against an India who has been No.1 for five-six years. Hard opposition to be playing against....you go through an Indian line-up, world-class players. We know whatever XI we face, they will be great. India has been a world No.1 side. They keep the bar very high," Taylor told media on Tuesday.
India has been the No.1 Test side according to ICC rankings, having scored wins over Australia and England over the past few months. They had taken the No.1 slot from New Zealand. However, the Kiwis wrested back the top position after their 1-0 win in the two-Test series.
"India has been a fantastic side for a long time, not just in batting but bowling also. [The 2-1] Series win against Australia was great. It was great for the New Zealand public to see great bowling. They [Indian bowlers in Southampton] would have enjoyed swing and bounce. Whoever we come up against, we will be ready for it," he added.
The No. 4 batsmen, who scored 80 in the first innings of the Test, said that playing two Test matches against England was the ideal preparation for the WTC final.
"It was ideal preparation, playing two Tests against England. Guys gained some match preparation and experience in such conditions. Gives our player a little more confidence," said Taylor.
The 37-year-old added that despite their experience of two Tests, India remains a tough competitor.
"Regardless of where you play India, away or at home, they are tough. [The three-day match simulation] warmup for India must have been like a Test match," he said.
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