Trent Boult ready to deliver for the Black Caps

AARON GOILE
Last updated 05:00 22/05/2014
Trent Boult
PETER DRURY/Fairfax NZ
READY TO DELIVER: Trent Boult.

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It doesn't sound like such a bad gig, a mid-year getaway to the tropical West Indies.

But for Trent Boult and the rest of the Black Caps seam attack, there's some tough toil ahead, and they know it.

Slow, docile pitches will be in the offing in the three-test series, and the pacemen will have to work hard for their wickets.

But that's a quality that Boult, 24, has already shown truckloads of in his flourishing international career. The Bay of Plenty left-armer has played just 22 tests but has 82 scalps to his name at the impressive average of 26.59, and has formed a formidable partnership with Tim Southee as New Zealand's dangerous new ball-duo.

"The wickets aren't really going to be too pace bowler-friendly I guess. But it's all part of it," Boult said. "It's about test cricket and it's about touring. It's going to be exciting.

"I know, as a group, something we want to be better at is touring and playing away from home."

It's a decent point Boult makes about winning away, as this is the next step for the side who recently surpassed Sri Lanka to reach No 6 in the ICC rankings, having had a wonderful home summer in notching series wins over both the Windies and India.

Against the West Indies Boult was super, with 20 wickets at 15.4, and although conditions will be tougher for him this time, he said many of the same principles of bowling would still apply.

"There's flat wickets in New Zealand, there's flat wickets everywhere, so using the new ball, using the swing is going to be important, and then reverse swing's got to factor into it in the later part of the innings. So if we can exploit those two things, as well as staying to our lines and staying to our plans, I think yeah, we're going to be successful. We've taken a lot of confidence out of what we've done to their lineup here in New Zealand.

"I have no doubt they weren't too satisfied with how they hit out over here.

"I know they'll be looking for revenge, so it's going to be all on."

For Boult, who has moved up to a career-high No 7 in the test bowling rankings, this will be his second time over in that part of the world, having been on the 2012 tour which was disastrous results-wise, and tough to settle into.

"I thought last time I was there it was pretty frustrating. Obviously every island's its own country in a way. And the amount of times you're on planes and going through customs and changing your sim cards and all sorts of things, it does get to you. But it's the Caribbean, it's very relaxed and it's not really too bad."

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With no cricket for the last six weeks, there's been plenty of fitness sessions to keep Boult busy, and he has had to be smart with easing into his bowling loads on indoor artificial surfaces.

"It doesn't really stop," he said. "But I think it's a good thing. It's a fulltime job, obviously, and it's something I'm very passionate about. And I enjoy the physical side of things and staying in shape and getting fit, otherwise I wouldn't really be doing it, would I."

The Black Caps depart on Saturday, heading to Jamaica's Montego Bay for a 10-day camp, which includes two warm-up games, ahead of the first test in Jamaica, beginning on June 8.

- Stuff

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