Black Caps coach satisfied with preparation

New Zealand coach Mike Hesson is upbeat going into the World Cup as he feels his side have had the best preparation possible before the showpiece event, which they will be co-hosting with Australia, gets underway on the 14 February.

The Black Caps have had nine international matches, seven against Sri Lanka and two against Pakistan, in the last two months to get all the players in their 15-man squad into some sort of form, with bat and ball.

New Zealand, after beating Sri Lanka and Pakistan quite convincingly, go into the tournament as one of the favourites as most players are in reasonable form heading into the tournament.

Hesson said: "The key for us is we don't get too far ahead of ourselves, but our preparation has gone as well as I could wish for. We had to make sure at the end of the nine games that everyone was firing and still fresh.

"We will have niggles from time to time and we will have players that go through the odd lean patch, and thankfully we've got other players that can fill the void and that's the sign of a good side."

Even though they beat both Asian nations convincingly, Hesson believes all his players got a proper workout against tough opponents.

He said: "Guys have had to bowl at the death under pressure. We've had to chase medium scores, high scores. We've had to bat first in conditions that have been challenging at times. It's been great preparation for us."

The coach has given his team a few days off before they reconvene to prepare for what will probably be the most exciting times in New Zealand cricket.

Hesson concluded: "It's been a big few months so just to have three days at home and get in the gym and do some strength work is important. We know what's around the corner but we still need to arrive back together on the seventh nice and fresh."

The Black Caps play the first match of cricket's showpiece event against Sri Lanka at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch.