Former New Zealand coach Hesson denies claims of Australia phobia

Former New Zealand head coach Mike Hesson denied that the Blackcaps have a phobia when playing against Australia. He added that Australia playing swing better than India means they match-up evenly against New Zealand, who in turn do well against India. The comments by Hesson come after New Zealand lost the Men’s T20 World Cup final to Australia in Dubai on November 14.

“Each side has got better matchups than others. We obviously do very well against India. Australia struggle against India. I think it’s just the way the side’s matchup against each other from a skill perspective, what we’re good at facing and what they’re good at facing. Australia tends to deal with our swing bowling a lot better than the Indians do. So, I think it’s more matchup than phobia from my perspective,” said Hesson on Mornings with Ian Smith show on SENZ.

New Zealand losing in the Men’s T20 World Cup final to Australia by eight wickets brought back memories of Australia outclassing New Zealand by seven wickets in the final of the 2015 Cricket World Cup in Melbourne. Hesson, who was the head coach when New Zealand reached the final, doesn’t believe much in the phobia factor against their Tasman Sea opponents.

“I guess we’ve only really had two big occasions haven’t we (recently), the 2015 World Cup and this one in terms of finals. We’ve beaten them a heck of a lot in Chappell-Hadlees (trophies) over the last six or seven years, and we’ve basically retained it the majority of the time. I think we’re okay in bi-laterals. It’s when we get to a big stage and more of their players have potentially played more big matches. But I don’t think necessarily there’s a phobia.”

New Zealand are scheduled to tour Australia next year for three ODIs and one T20I. Australia will then tour New Zealand for three T20Is in March 2022.