Swann confident ahead of New Zealand clash

England finger spinner Graeme Swann has the utmost respect for his fellow exponent Daniel Vettori - but that does not mean he or any of his team-mates will be wary of the New Zealand captain today.

Vettori's team potentially stand between England and a place in the semi-finals of the ICC World Twenty20.

But even if South Africa beat Pakistan in today's first Super Eight match at the Beausejour Stadium, England need only avoid a wide-margin defeat against the Kiwis at the same venue to make sure they progress to the last four.

For Swann, there is also the chance to measure himself against the bowler he sees as the best in the world of his type.

"I admire any finger spinner in world cricket, because it's the hardest job in the world," said Swann, in his usual ironic good humour about his own trade.

"It's obviously easier for left-armers; us right-armers really have to fight tooth and nail to get a bowl half the time.

"But Dan Vettori is the best one-day spinner in the world.

"I'm not a great man for looking at figures. But you don't need to; you watch him bowl - his change of flight, pace and everything is second to none.

"But we won't go into the game worrying about him; we'll go into it looking to target him as well as the other Kiwi bowlers."

Swann and slow left-armer Michael Yardy once again proved the worth of spinners in this Caribbean tournament, by taking five top-order wickets as England trounced South Africa at Kensington Oval on Saturday.

They did so with the help of Kevin Pietersen, who left for England within hours of winning that match to be at the birth of his first child in London.

Pietersen is expected back in time for a semi-final on Thursday or Friday.

Swann conceded: "It's obviously a loss not to have Kevin for the next game.

"But after winning these last two, it probably makes it a little bit easier."

In any case, he is confident that in Ravi Bopara England have an ideal man to deputise for their mercurial number three.

"We've got Ravi to come back, who in this form of the game can be as destructive as anyone - even Kev.

"He'll come in and stake a claim to be involved. If we qualify for the semi-final he'll want to get a spot in it.

"It's obviously disappointing to miss Kev. But I think everyone in the squad understands why, and we're 100% behind him."

As for his spin partnership with Yardy, Swann is increasingly impressed with the contribution of the Sussex captain.

The pair simply work out how they are going to operate beforehand, and then put it into practice to significant effect.

"It's so noisy here, so you can't have a conflab (on the pitch) - and I can't understand a word he says in his West Ham accent," added Swann.

"We don't talk on the field. It's all done beforehand. We go out there knowing exactly what we've got to do, who to do it to, and when to do it.

"He certainly doesn't say anything to the batsmen; he gets on with his game. He just runs up and does his job.

"I'm sure he's annoying to a few batsmen at the minute, because he keeps getting them out."

peopleFrankie Boyle responds to referendum result in characteristically offensive style
Life and Style
Couples have been having sex less in 2014, according to a new survey
New Articles
i100... with this review
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Holly's review of Peterborough's Pizza Express quickly went viral on social media
footballTim Sherwood: This might be th match to wake up Manchester City
Arts and Entertainment
musicHow female vocalists are now writing their own hits
New Articles
Arts and Entertainment
musicBiographer Hunter Davies has collected nearly a hundred original manuscripts
Blahnik says: 'I think I understand the English more than they do themselves'
Arts and Entertainment
Michelle Dockery as Lady Mary Crawley in Downton Abbey
TVInside Downton Abbey series 5
Life and Style
The term 'normcore' was given the oxygen of publicity by New York magazine during the autumn/winter shows in Paris in February
fashionWhen is a trend a non-trend? When it's Normcore, since you ask
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam