New Zealand captain Kane Williamson registered his 22nd Test century during the recently concluded 5-day contest against England. Williamson’s unbeaten innings ensured the series-deciding match ended in a draw with New Zealand pocketing the Test segment of the English tour by a 1-0 margin. Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting took note of Williamson’s recent run-of-form and likened the Kiwi skipper with Test maverick Steve Smith.
Ricky Ponting has admitted he had reservations about NZ skipper Kane Williamson's potential early in his international career but now likens him to Steve Smith: https://t.co/egLCZ6IWQw pic.twitter.com/syYcOgmxzn— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) December 4, 2019
While speaking with Cricket Australia, Ricky Ponting said that he sees a lot of the Australian star in Kane Williamson. He added that he has mostly seen Williamson’s batting abilities up close in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Furthermore, Ponting said that the New Zealand captain is very ‘regimented’ in his batting approach which is very much like Steve Smith in Test cricket. He considers the two batsmen as those who can play the ball late and do not get a big stride at the ball. Ponting also suggested opposition bowlers that Smith and Williamson can be dismissed the most often in a similar manner, which is by keeping the ball on the fourth and fifth stump with consistent lengths.
According to the latest ICC Test rankings for batsmen, both Steve Smith and Kane Williamson are placed at second and third positions respectively. Steve Smith held the number 1 position for a while before being leapfrogged by Indian captain Virat Kohli in the latest charts as of Tuesday. Only five rating points separate the top 2 batsmen while Kane Williamson is third with 877 points.
Meanwhile, Kane Williamson will now lead New Zealand in the upcoming Trans-Tasman Trophy Test series in Australia. New Zealand are scheduled to play three Test matches starting with the opening game from December 12. The three-Test matches will form a part of the ongoing ICC World Test Championship.