CLT20 bite-size preview: Northern Districts

New Zealand

They have a strong Black Caps backbone, though few of their players have experience in Indian T20 conditions. They have never played in this event, with Otago the Kiwi representatives last time.

<b>Brief Overview:</b> One of the few teams without any foreign players, the Knights are actually quite strong, considering they come into the event after winning a tournament comprising of six teams. They have a strong Black Caps backbone, though few of their players have experience in Indian T20 conditions. They have never played in this event, with Otago the Kiwi representatives last time.

<b>Key Strength:</b> Their bowling attack is a strong one, with international pace pairing Tim Southee and Trent Boult leading the attack. They also have Kiwi spinner Ish Sodhi, making up for the absence of Dan Vettori. Veteran T20 specialist Scott Styris adds value too, but Kane Williamson has been banned from bowling by the ICC.

<b>Probable Weakness:</b> Their batting line up is choppy, and if Kane Williamson and BJ Watling fail, then all the pressure is on Anton Devcich. Brad Wilson is their most experienced batsman domestically, but how will the unknowns go in India?

<b>Batsman To Watch:</b> Definitely Kane Williamson. He comes into the event off a run of good form for Yorkshire, having been focusing on his batting after being banned from bowling his off-spinners. He is the one man in the side who can bat in any format.

<b>Bowler To Watch:</b> Leg-spinner Ish Sodhi returns to the land of his birth in good form, having been performing well for New Zealand A recently. His bowling will work well on the turning decks, and leggies are rare these days, giving him a novelty value.

<b>Squad:</b> Ish Sodhi, Jono Boult, Brad Wilson, Kane Williamson, Daniel Flynn (captain), BJ Watling, Graeme Aldridge, Anton Devcich, Tim Southee, Scott Kuggeleijn, Daryl Mitchell, Daniel Harris, Scott Styris, Trent Boult, Mitchell Santner.

<b>Toughest Fixture:</b> The Knights have to get past the qualifying stage first, and their toughest outing will be against former IPL champs, the Mumbai Indians. They clash n 16 September in Raipur, with the Knights already two games in the bag. This game could be make or break.

<b>They Said:</b> Skipper Daniel Flynn: "To qualify for the CLT20 will be our first and foremost aim. Pitches back home are a lot different from those here. We'll share knowledge with the experienced guys in our side familiar with these conditions to know what to be confronted with."

<b>Cricket365's Prediction:</b> Sixth.

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