While this was not the strongest side to visit New Zealand you can only play who you are up against, and a couple of innings wins when losing both tosses is impressive.
This was the first time New Zealand had enforced the follow on in consecutive tests since 2013, which was also against the West Indies.
With the exception of spin bowling this is now a squad with some depth and a lot of experience. Exhibit A
BJ Watling now has 250 test dismissals (as keeper and fielder). First NZer and 11th overall to reach the milestone #NZvWI
— Francis Payne (@FPayne100) December 12, 2020
The rise and rise of Kyle Jamieson has been the single biggest development over the last 12 months. He’s developed from being a decent bounce bowler to one who can swing it both ways
A genuine four pronged pace attack is something New Zealand has occasionally flirted with in the past but this quartet is consistently threatening, and easily the best quartet ever fielded. It didn’t really seem to matter who was bowling at the time, there was always pressure being applied.
His batting means that such an attack is possible, and with Wagner changing his batting game it offers a counter attack angle, as seen in both tests against India as well as this weekend.
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This game also brought to an end the strange movement that Henry Nicholls should be dropped. For most of his career he has had a batting average above 40, and by New Zealand standards that is high.
He, Latham, Williamson and Taylor make a powerful batting lineup, and there is now a lot of competition for the other slot, as well as injury or baby replacements with Blundell, Young, Phillips and Conway all having strong credentials.
The trip to Mt Victoria will have to wait another day, and Holder in particular batted well. Just enjoy this era while you can.
And in one of those curious corner case pieces of trivia that cricket specializes in, this was only the third time that two New Zealanders had taken a 5 wicket bag in the same innings. The two previous occurrences were the great Hadlee and Chatfield combination, and on the legendary 1949 tour of England.