Williamson: It was important to try and make good decisions for a long period of time

New Zealand

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson was delighted to be able to contribute 251 runs to the Black Caps first innings cause.

Williamson was in action during the IPL but the first Test against the West Indies marks his return to red-ball international action for the first time since March.

Williamson carries New Zealand’s efforts

The Black Caps skipper stood tall with a career-best 251 not out as New Zealand posted an imposing 519 for 7 declared.

Williamson said that despite the bowling green colour of the pitch, the surface was flattening out and he expects to be faced with a significant challenge to bowl the West Indies out.

“After the day’s play yesterday, looking at the surface we were pretty happy to finish only a couple of wickets down,” Williamson said after the stumps were drawn. 

“There was a little bit of movement and we had some fortune to be able to build those partnerships. But the Hamilton wicket keeps flattening out so a lot of work for the bowlers to do.”

Williamson now has three Test double centuries to his name but says that milestones are not on his mind, despite closing in on the New Zealand record of four established by Brendon McCullum.

Focus is the watchword

The skipper says that he was focused on his decision-making at the crease.

“This game was [our first] Test cricket after a while, so it was just getting back to the processes,” Williamson added.

“Was happy to be able to do that for a good period. It was tough; it’s always tough, isn’t it? The ball was moving about, and the West Indies bowlers keep coming. There are those times when it swings more than other times, so you just try to weather that storm so to speak and then you can get runs your way when the bowlers tire.

“Throughout an innings, you always feel a bit different. I Spent two weeks with Brendon in lockdown working on bits and pieces. It was important to try and make good decisions for a long period of time, and it was nice [that] I was able to do that. But there is so much cricket left, so our focus is on that at the moment.

“It was a challenge to stay as disciplined as you can. Nice to build those partnerships with guys coming in. it’s always difficult to start, steep bounce as well so all the guys really applied themselves.”

The West Indies were 49 without loss at stumps after openers John Campbell and Kraigg Brathwaite survived a 26-over examination.