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Kiwis plan to play it hard

After being accused of taking the traditional Lilac Hill festival game a little too seriously last week, the touring New Zealander's say they intend to do the same against Australia in the upcoming Twenty20 international.

The Black Caps kicked off their limited overs tour of Australia at the festival game in WA's Swan Valley wine region last Friday, a game usually more notable for the off-field festivities than the on-field rivalries.

But the Kiwis showed their intent by declining to play with an orange ball, insisting on a toss and then ignoring the tradition of tourists batting first, inserting the Cricket Australia Chairman's XI on a greenish wicket.

Despite all that, the Kiwis still lost by seven runs, after a battering from Luke Pomersbach and David Hussey and then failing to dominate a bowling attack including WA veterans Jo Angel and Ryan Campbell.

However, spinner Jeetan Patel said the Kiwis would adopt a similar attitude at the WACA on Tuesday in a bid to fire an early psychological shot ahead of the Chappell-Hadlee series.

"The guys are really raring to go," Patel told AAP.

"If we get over the line (on Tuesday) then it boosts morale again, and we can hopefully push home that advantage in that first (Chappell-Hadlee trophy) game in Adelaide."

"(Lilac Hill) was very useful, obviously the result did not go our way and that was ... a little bit disappointing, but we had a good bowl and a good bat for 50 overs.

"But Australia are just full of a lot of talent and a lot of depth, so we have really got to be on our game to firstly get up in the Twenty20, and then defend the Chappell Hadlee."

The pedestrian over rate from New Zealand at Lilac Hill also raised some eyebrows, with the first 10 overs taking an hour, and the Chairman's XI 47 overs taking four hours to complete.

Patel said as a spinner he could also be looking to slow things down on Tuesday against an Australian team still powerful despite the absence of skipper Ricky Ponting and Matthew Hayden.

"Personally it is quite tough being a spinner, and you sort of expect to go for more than six (an over). If you can keep it as six you have done a decent job," Patel said.

"We had good fun in the Twenty20 in South Africa, and bowled pretty well there, so hopefully I can take the confidence going into the game.

"The thing with being a spinner in this form of the game is that you can take the pace right off the ball, or really heat it up."

source - theage.com.au
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