IPL makes us friendlier says Vettori
As well as riches and celebrity status in one of the world's most populous countries, Black Caps captain Daniel Vettori believes the Indian Premier League will also help eliminate the seedier side of sledging.
Recent spats in Australia involving Andrew Symonds and India's Harbhajan Singh may have been avoided now the Australians are playing in IPL franchises with rivals from India, New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, and have a chance to get to know each other personally.
"You got to know a lot of guys more than you ever thought you would," Vettori said. "You got to know them as people and therefore that takes a lot of the rivalry out of it.
"I think you'll still play hard cricket. But I think a lot of situations will be defused because one guy knows the other guy because they played with him or someone else in the team knows them pretty well and they can say, `well this is probably where he is coming from'. "
Vettori, who joined the Black Caps from the Delhi Daredevils on Friday before a four-day match against Essex in Chelmsford, does not expect the intensity will drop in test cricket.
"I don't think it will ever dilute it. It just won't be taken to extremes as we've seen in recent history.
"If people got together or had known each other a little better then it wouldn't have reached the levels it has," he said.
"I don't think you'll ever see guys backing down in a test match but I think there will be a lot more understanding of situations."
Vettori believes Twenty20 cricket is here to stay and hopes the International Cricket Council (ICC) can find a window for the contest which is attracting world-class players, fanatical crowds and millions of dollars.
"I'm not sure if it is the future of world cricket. But I think it can sit side-by-side with test cricket and one-day cricket. And I'm hoping there is a window so it doesn't affect New Zealand commitments and hopefully the ICC can find a way to make sure that everything has a balance," he said.
Having departed steamy India for a sodden England, Vettori is adamant his priorities lie with New Zealand and winning a rare test series there, starting with the first test at Lord's on May 15.
"Winning the test series against England is incredibly important to us and it's a feat we haven't achieved all that often," he said.
"My priority is to New Zealand cricket, although hopefully there will be another window next year to play in the IPL."
Aaron Redmond has been earmarked to make his test debut at the top of the order for New Zealand at Lord's as John Bracewell's side look to begin a new era without Stephen Fleming.
"England are a strong team in their own conditions and I think it's important for us that we get off to a good start. We have thought long and hard about the top-order batting, our batting overall and getting those runs on the board and hopefully give our bowlers and to some degree our lower order batsmen a chance to thrive because they have done a good job the last few years," Vettori said.
"If guys like Jamie How and Aaron Redmond can step up at the top of the order then I think that we have a really good chance over here."