Blackcaps v India: Test championship star Kyle Jamieson poised for very different role (if any) on subcontinent

After his starring performance in the Blackcaps' World Test Championship triumph just five months ago, Kyle Jamieson faces a very different role - and perhaps none at all - when they take on India at Kanpur on Thursday.

The lanky pace bowler was named Man of the Match, after taking seven scalps - including a first-innings 'five-for' - in a eight-wicket victory over the Indians at Southampton.

In just eight tests, he has already taken 46 wickets, with five five-wicket bags, to help elevate the New Zealand attack to world class status.

India already hold a special place in Jamieson's young international career - he made his one-day and test debuts against them in New Zealand in February 2020, and was one of the biggest winners from this year's Indian Premier League auction.

But Kanpur is not Southampton or Wellington, and the speedster will be hard pressed to repeat his heroics on the spin-friendly pitches expected during the upcoming two-test series. 

"I haven't played a huge amount of cricket over here," admits Jamieson. "I had the first half of the IPL, which was good, but this will be different again.

"I've got 'Wags' and Tim here to bounce ideas off them, and get their expertise on how to bowl here. It'll certainly be a different challenge to what we get back home, but I'm really looking forward to it."

By default, Jamieson, 26, will be bumped up the pace-bowling pecking order, with veteran left-armer Trent Boult returning to New Zealand, after the three-match Twenty20 series. Tim Southee and Neil Wagner are still the senior pros in a three-prong new-ball arsenal, but may find themselves upstaged by tweakers Ajaz Patel and Will Somerville.

"I think, first and foremost for me is not changing my game too much," reflects Jamieson. "Still stick to my strengths, but adapt them to what the conditions give.

"Timmy and Wags will be great sounding boards for that as well. It's a matter of adapting on the go, for me.

"If I play and get the new ball, I'll still try to swing it and do the same things initially. As conditions change and roles change, I need to focus on that to the best of my ability."  

Despite his IPL windfall, Jamieson has struggled over the game's shortest form and was assigned drinks duties, as the Blackcaps progress to this month's T20 World Cup final at Dubai.

Back in the test environment, where he's achieved his best results, Jamieson feels more at home.

"It was quite nice to be part of a World Cup and go the way we did, although not quite there at the final hurdle," he says. "It gave me a chance to take a step back from the volume of cricket I had been playing.

"It gave me a chance to work on my game, and get back in the gym with [trainer Chris Donaldson] and work on a few things.

"I certainly love being part of this test group and having us back together to share some stories. Guys have been off doing different things, but it's nice to have that familiarity and coming together for a pretty big challenge."

Join us at 5pm Thursday for live updates of the first test between the Blackcaps and India