New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson is all geared up to take the rivalry with England to the next level- in the longer format of the game after an exciting T20 series and the host's tragic World Cup end. Ahead of the first Test between the two sides, Kane Williamson revealed that he was very pleased with the rollback of the controversial boundary count rule that snatched New Zealand's victory from right under their noses. This is the first time the Kiwi skipper has voiced his opinion on the boundary count rule after the World Cup although he had earlier accepted the result of the game and the loss hence.
In what could be described as the most controversial World Cup finals in the history of cricket, the boundary count rule was used to adjudge England as the winner of the finals after the game was tied both at the end of 50 overs and at the end of the Super Over. Speaking to media persons at the Bay Oval ahead of the first Test, Kane Williamson said that it wasn't cricket and that the rule was hard to take for the players. In addition to it, Kane Williamson said that neither of the teams had anticipated that the rule was going to be applied and that while there were many nerve-racking matches in the history of cricket, no game could ever come close to the 2019 World cup finals between England and New Zealand.
New Zealand and England will take their cricketing rivalry into the Test arena Thursday after finding themselves evenly matched in recent limited-overs thrillers. England have bragging rights after winning a rollercoaster World Cup final in July, then edging the Black Caps 3-2 in a desperately close Twenty20 series completed earlier this month. Both the one-day decider and T20 series needed tie-breakers to find a winner and there will be no shortage of mutual respect when the rivals face off again Thursday in the First Test at Mount Maunganui.
On paper, there again appears to be little to separate the teams, with New Zealand second in the Test rankings and England third. But England skipper Joe Root is painfully aware that his team underperformed when it lost a two-Test series in New Zealand last year after underestimating the Black Caps' bowlers on their home turf. Pacemen Trent Boult and Tim Southee bundled the tourists out for 58 in the first innings of the opening Test as England tried to play what Root described as "fast forward" cricket.
England's skipper said his team would be taking a more measured approach this time, with batsmen placing an emphasis on protecting their wickets. "We have to be prepared to play some attritional cricket at times," he said. "We have to try to bat longer... it would be nice to get used to batting for 120 overs more regularly, especially in the first innings."