Napier: For the first time in his 13-year-old career, fast bowler Kyle Mills is facing some real competition in the New Zealand fast bowling ranks.
For the 34-year-old, who is a veteran of 162 ODIs, the five-math ODI series against India could be either make or break. But if he comes out strong, Mills would be seen leading the pace attack in the 2015 World Cup.
Young and rising fast bowler Adam Mile is breathing down his neck and with Tim Southee appointed the leader of the attack, Mills has a tough challenge in hand.
On Sunday, either Mills or Mitchell McClenaghan will miss out from the series opener against India in the first ODI here.
"Throughout my time this is the best depth in the bowling department that I've come across which is obviously healthy for the team," Mills was quoted as saying by Stuff.co.nz.
New Zealand coach Mike Hesson feels that Mills would be the new ball bowler is he is selected. Mills said his role has hardly changed over the years.
"My role has always been trying to get us off to a good start, keep the runs per over down and try to build some pressure and force some false strokes," he said. Mills knows it will be a different Indian batting line-up.
"Hopefully we can get into their top order. It's a different Indian side to what we've faced over the last decade and there's new players on the scene with a bit of hype about them. (Virat) Kohli is obviously a quality player and (Shikhar) Dhawan has done a pretty good job.
"I haven't really played a lot of their batsmen. Kohli is a very good player. I've watched footage of him and he's a class act and his record is stacking up to be as good as Tendulkar.
He's going to have the weight of a nation, so to speak, on him to fill those shoes. There might be an opportunity for us to create that pressure on him," he said.