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It follows that when one is in New Zealand, one plays in New Zealand. But the Indians, in the two Tests thus far, have played in conditions found more readily at home than in the alien, sinister New Zealand of imagination; they’ve scarcely had occasion to air their long-sleeved sweaters, much less emerge from fire-heated dressing rooms trussed in layers of woollens, fingers and lips still chapping.

While the direct New Zealand sun has welcomed India like it has few touring teams before, the actual playing conditions have been even more hospitable. Hamilton had a touch of movement off the seam, while Napier had bounce. But neither pitch, contrary to the speculation in the days leading up to the Test, was damp or green. Indeed on match day, they resembled surfaces baked for batting.

Perhaps it’s because New Zealand is in the final stage of its domestic season — the strips have had much traffic, and are tired as a result; perhaps the presence of a new-ball pair as skilled and threatening as Zaheer Khan and Ishant Sharma is prohibitory: whatever the reason, it’s puzzling that while New Zealand has banged on about wanting more sideways movement at pace from the strip, the bowlers, like renown trouble-makers at a nightclub, have been disarmed at entry.

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