It is a moving landscape and there is a balance to strike – Kane Williamson talks about the future of NZ cricket
New Zealand captain Kane Williamson addressed NDTV on Tuesday, where he discussed the selection calls, the rise of Umran Malik, and the debate over the strike rate in the shortest format, and the series against India which will be played shortly after the World Cup.
With the T20 World Cup all over, the white-ball series will be played between India and New Zealand from November 18, 2022.
Hardik Pandya will lead India in the short format while Shikhar Dhawan will lead the side in the ODI format. On Tuesday, New Zealand named a full-strength squad, with Kane Williamson being the in-charge.
New Zealand captain Kane Williamson addressed NDTV on Tuesday, where he discussed the selection calls, the rise of Umran Malik, the debate over the strike rate in the shortest format, and the series against India which will be played shortly after the World Cup.
Running the non-strike out when he/she is too far ahead when the bowler is about to bowl, is being talked out a lot, and Williamson feels that this mode of dismissal is not an “attractive part of the game”.
“It is not something we are looking to do. It has been spoken about a lot. Personally, I do not think it is a very attractive part of the game. You know you compete, you do all you can and you want to make sure that people are not looking to get an advantage by leaving the crease a long way early. But I do not think it is a great part of the game. Most people turn up to see the competition between the bat and ball, not seeing a ball not being bowled,”Williamson told NDTV.
In the T20 World Cup, one saw Glenn Phillips sort of taking a sprinter-like position at the non-striker’s end and talking about that, Williamson said:
“We certainly did not speak about that. It was all Glenn. You know, he is pretty quick and he thought maybe starting like a sprinter will probably add more. He could have maybe stood outside his crease and put his bat in, and got a head start. There are few different theories out there,”he added.
“Glenn is an incredibly special player and he had an incredible World Cup, where he played incredible knocks for us. We know how special he is as an athlete. He is such a valuable player and he brings that X-factor to our team.”
Talking about Umran, Williamson said:
“Yeah, he is super talented and can bowl that 150 mark, which is not something too many in the world can do. Every opportunity he gets, he would be learning more and more. Last season in the IPL, was a great experience for him and he had some great moments as well. He is a special talent.”
Trent Boult quit his central contract recently, and even though he played in the T20 World Cup, the pacer has not been chosen for the series against India.
“There is a lot to work through and what that picture looks like. It is a moving landscape and there is a balance to strike. It is new for everybody; the number of players who have made this decision is still very keen to play for New Zealand. We want to see the balance around those options and as a team, you are always looking to build. This presents the opportunity for the other guys to commit to roles in the team. It is one to work through, I suppose.”
When asked whether he sees playing all the upcoming games for New Zealand, the Kiwi captain said:
“All the games and all the formats, I suppose, like anybody, we have to manage all the players. Certainly, the players are involved in all the formats. I think we have had more days of cricket this year than we have ever had in the history of the game. Yeah, it is important to keep players fresh. My elbow is getting better with time, so touchwood.”
“That seems to hugely happen, boards prioritize and work backward from the major events and factor in the format that is about to come up,”said Williamson.
Talking about the criticism surrounding the lower strike rates in T20s, Williamson said:
“Yeah, I think it is all about what the team needs and requires and navigating different situations and how that looks. As players, you always want to take the innings further and things like that. In T20s, it is pretty fickle in terms of its nature. Sometimes, the strike rate is lower and sometimes it is higher. You factor in situations and partnerships; the outcome is kind of what it is. You are always working hard to improve and sometimes you see valuable contributions which are of a lower strike rate. On other days, there are higher strike rates. It is very much situation dependent.”
New Zealand Squad: Kane Williamson (c), Finn Allen, Michael Bracewell, Devon Conway, Lockie Ferguson, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Daryl Mitchell, Adam Milne, Glenn Phillips, Jimmy Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Blair Tickner.