New Zealand captain Kane Williamson heaped praise on his team for playing “superb cricket” at Lord’s Cricket Ground even though there was no outcome of the first Test of the ongoing two-match Test series against England on Sunday (June 6).
After the first Test ended in a draw, Williamson said the losing a day to the weather doesn't really help New Zealand in their quest to win the game, but his players played brilliantly against England at Lord’s.
However, Kane asked the Kiwis to “start afresh” and “execute” plans against England in the second and final Test to be played from June 10 at Edgbaston as they are a very difficult side to beat.
New Zealand had a great start in the first Test as the debutant Devon Conway gave a great start to the tourists with his brilliant 200 followed by Henry Nicholls’ fighting fifty and then Tim Southee’s 6/43 in 25.1 overs and Kyle Jamieson’s 3 scalps helped them to bowl out England to 275 in the first innings.
On Day 5, Neil Wagner returned with 2 wickets as England could muster 170-3 in 70 overs by the scheduled time before the game ended in a draw at Lord’s on Sunday.
Williamson told reporters, “I thought the guys played some superb cricket throughout to give us that potential opportunity. Unfortunately, it wasn't to be today, losing a day to the weather doesn't help the cause but I thought the efforts were certainly there.”
He also opened up on the decision to declare after scoring 169/6 on day four at Lord’s, saying they were expecting the pitch would deteriorate but it sort of flattened out on the final day of the game.
The skipper further explained, “We declared for a reason and that was to try and push for a victory. Although it seemed unlikely for a period if one spun out of the rough or you were able to open up and end then anything could happen reasonably quickly, and we were holding on to that hope for as long as we could. But clearly, things became quite docile out there.”
On the upcoming final Test, “We know the quality England have and they're a very difficult side to beat. It's important we get back to our plans, starting afresh at a new ground, and look to execute.”
Williamson signed off by hailing Conway and Southee, “Devon has shown his class — a debut Test at 'the home of cricket' and he just looked so comfortable. To score a double century is an incredible feat. Tim led the attack beautifully.”
(With PTI Inputs)