17 Nov 2008

Ordinary dress rehearsal for Black Caps

5:51 am on 17 November 2008

It was a "pretty poor" effort by the New Zealand cricketers in their only warmup match before their two-test series against Australia, starting on Thursday in Brisbane.

That was how skipper Daniel Vettori described their 6-wicket loss to a New South Wales side with an average age of 22 years, thanks to nine absent leading players, including seven internationals.

The Blacks Caps were able to muster only 266 and 256 in the four-day match, and New South Wales reached their victory target of 162 with 13 overs to spare.

Vettori expects wicketkeeper Brendan McCullum to be fit for the first test despite suffering back spasms and being struck on the toe during the game in Sydney.