LEEDS: New Zealand coach Mike Hesson said he was delighted with the way his side “stuck to their guns” after coming from behind to draw a Test series with England.
The Black Caps thrashed England by 199 runs in the second Test at Headingley on Tuesday, just over a week after they lost the first of this two-match series by 124 runs at Lord’s.
The victory, only their fifth in 54 Tests in England, saw New Zealand end level at 1-1 and meant they had now been unbeaten in seven successive Test series.
Both their innings in the second Test saw New Zealand make shaky starts.
They were 2-2 in their first-innings and 23-2 in their second, but New Zealand continued to attack England’s bowlers and recovered to post totals of 350 and 454-8 declared respectively.
“It is challenging because obviously if it doesn’t work out, you can get exposed,” said Hesson. “We were under pressure a lot of the time and on most occasions we took a step forward. We stuck to the way we want to play and in a short space of time we got the initiative back.”
Hesson, who oversaw co-hosts New Zealand’s run to this year’s World Cup final, was particularly pleased at chalking up an away victory. “It’s seven Test series in a row without defeat. That’s something we are immensely proud of as a group.”
New Zealand now face England in a five-match ODI series, starting with the first ODI at Edgbaston on June 9.
England, in a bid to build a new one-day side and also to give some senior players a rest before the Ashes, have dropped James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Ian Bell from their squad.
Now the likes of aggressive Surrey batsman Jason Roy and Northamptonshire all-rounder David Willey will be looking to impress against New Zealand.
“I think it’s an exciting squad. I guess some of the players have been left out because of form, others to rest for the Ashes,” said Hesson. “But it’s an exciting and a dangerous side.”
Published in The Express Tribune, June 4th, 2015.
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