New Zealand batsman Devon Conway has moved a step closer to his long-awaited Test debut for the Kiwi in the upcoming two-match Test series against England next week with his stunning batting performance in an intra-squad match on Thursday (May 27).
Playing for the Latham XI against the Williamson XI, Conway slammed an unbeaten fifty, as well as, added 106 for the opening wicket with his skipper Tom Latham against the strong bowling attack comprising Tim Southee, Jacob Duffy, Mitchell Santner, and Neil Wagner in the practice game.
The left-hander has already made in international debut for the Black Caps in the ODI and T20I cricket and now his superb performance in the intra-squad match on the nursery ground at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton has bolstered his chances of making his Test debut against England next week.
After the end of the practice game, the batsman said it was a good learning experience for him to bat alongside Latham at the top of the order, but rued to not get a chance to bat with Ross Taylor.
The 29-year-old Conway is expected to replace Tom Blundell as Latham’s opening partner in New Zealand’s playing XI in the upcoming Test series against England starting June 2 at Lord’s.
Conway said after the game: “There’s a little bit more pressure. You don’t want to get out, you want to try to spend as much time out in the middle [as possible]. In the nets, sometimes you go through the motions, whereas batting out in the middle you get that competitive nature going and that adrenaline can kick in at times as well. We’re very fortunate to get out on this nursery ground and go through those match-day routines, which is pretty exciting.”
He further added, “You’ve got Kane Williamson there at gully watching you bat. That’s pretty intimidating, one of the best guys watching you go about your business. But then also fronting up and facing guys like Tim Southee, who’s been there for a long time. I didn’t get the opportunity to bat with Ross Taylor today, which was a bit unfortunate, but hopefully one day I’ll get that chance.”
Well, Conway usually bats at No.3 but might be promoted as an opener against England and the cricketer is unfazed with the possibilities as he is eager to sport whites for his country.
He signed off by saying, “There’s probably not too much difference to be fair, sometimes if you’re batting three, you could be in the first over. It’s just about backing your game plan, backing the way you play, and just staying true to that as much as you can, regardless of the situation. It’s just about adjusting to the surface and being positive throughout.”
(With Stuff/News18 Inputs)