It has been a dream affair for Kane Williamson as he has seen a perfect 100% record win in the ongoing summer at home. New Zealand have been at their very best as they continue to excel with an entertaining brand of cricket.
Their latest 5-0 ODI series victory over Champions Trophy holders Pakistan, embodies a perfect scenario for them to build upon ahead of a long series against England at home. The BlackCaps have taken over a leaf out of India in making their backyard a fortress where teams are finding it hard to breach down.
They blew the West Indies away in Tests, ODIs and T20Is before Pakistan to fell short of providing any challenge after losing the 5-match series. They next face the Asian side in a three-match T20I series and know they can extend their 100% record with another clean sweep.
New Zealand complete the whitewash! Martin Guptill's 13th century sets the platform as New Zealand beat Pakistan by 15 runs in the 5th #NZvPAK ODI.
SCORECARD: https://t.co/DYY0sEmpkH pic.twitter.com/NXYpifU13D
— ICC (@ICC) January 19, 2018
The success owes down to a collective performance in each format and the latest series victory against Pakistan makes the side look like an unstoppable force in world cricket. Credit to the Kiwis for gaining flight and these victories will give them major confidence to continue their surge against England.
A look at New Zealand’s summer so far.
- Two Tests vs West Indies: Won 2-0
- Three ODIs vs West Indies: Won 3-0
- Three T20Is vs West Indies: Won 3-0
- Five ODIs vs Pakistan: Won 5-0
The statistics show a whopping 13-0 victory across all formats and that has been an immense achievement. Williamson praised the side’s cricket culture and noted the success achieved. “The guys are great. There’s a good cricket culture. Good to have success,” said the NZ skipper after their series win against Pakistan.
Skipper leads from the front
Williamson’s side so far has been terrific and watching their players staying true to the aggressive brand of cricket has been a visual treat. Thanks to their skipper for keeping things simple and leading by example. Williamson has performed well with the bat and has had the back-up of the players, who are enjoying their cricket in a happy atmosphere.
The 27-year-old has enjoyed being in the middle especially in the ODIs where he has scored 299 runs in six matches in the summer against the Windies and Pak respectively.
ODIs: Matches: 6, Runs – 299, Average – 49.83, Tons – 1, Highest Score – 115
Guptill steals the show versus Pakistan
New Zealand opening batsman Martin Guptill showed why he is so valuable to the side atop after amassing 310 runs against Pakistan. He laid the foundation for his side in every game as they built upon that to get to position of comfort. Guptill’s application shows the value of experience and he has kept to his true standards. He notched his 13th career ODI hundred in the fifth game at Wellington and in the process he notched a stellar record.
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Guptill joined a small, elite group of cricketers to have scored ODI centuries against each of the other nine full member nations, including his Black Caps team mate Ross Taylor, who achieved the feat in 2017. He became the ninth player to achieve this feat. A lot of credit goes out to Colin Munro who has taken off the pressure from Guptill after taking the initiative to attack freely.
Matches: 5, Runs – 310, Average – 62.00, Tons – 1, Highest Score – 100
Bowlers have been excellent in the summer
Led by Trent Boult and Tim Southee, the New Zealand bowling attack has been difficult to play against. The Windies faced the brunt and now Pakistan too suffered. Boult has been classy after mastering the swing conditions and had recently become the fifth fastest in ODIs to take 100 wickets when he achieved the feat against the Windies. Neil Wagner was superb with his barrage of short pitch bowling in the Tests and will be a vital cog in the series against England.
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Southee has picked up his form and was sublime to watch in the T2oIs. Mitchell Santner has excelled with the carom ball and has used it to great effect against Pakistan. In T20Is he has had an excellent form off late and will look to continue the same in the upcoming series. The rest of the bowlers like Lockie Ferguson, Ish Sodhi and Matt Henry have provided good support. They have all chipped in with wickets and have shared the workload.
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The Kiwis have been exciting to watch under conditions at home in the summer. With players being rotated and a healthy competition at offer, the period seems exciting for the side.