Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Legendary India batsman Sunil Gavaskar believes that New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum has transformed the Blackcaps “into a world beating side”.
Gavaskar has also been impressed with Kane Williamson’s form with the bat heading into the tournament.
“The progress they have made is phenomenal, under Brendon McCullum they have morphed into a world beating side” Gavaskar told NDTV. “He (Williamson) has been batting absolutely superbly. I think he is going to play a crucial role.
“He comes in at three, he scores at more than a run a ball and that’s what you want at number 3 – somebody who can [carry on] if there is an early breakthrough, maybe do a little bit of a repair job.”
Ex-Australia skipper Ian Chappell agreed with Gavaskar’s views, and added: “He (McCullum) attacks, he looks to gets wickets and in Australia, I think you’ve just got to be looking to take wickets in one day matches, otherwise you are going to be chasing way too many [runs].
“I like the look of him (Williamson). He plays well off the back foot and that’s very important in Australia. So, I think he is a very important man for New Zealand.”
Meanwhile, former India batsman VVS Laxman chose to focus on how lethal New Zealand’s bowling attack has become.
“A huge difference since the time I have seen Brendon McCullum taking over the New Zealand captaincy is the self-belief,” he said. “All the New Zealand teams I played against – they didn’t have this belief factor, especially when they [were] playing overseas or when they [were] playing in big tournaments.
“They have got a good bowling line-up to take wickets for them. So, I think it looks a settled unit and as long as they have got this aggressive and positive attitude and self-belief, [they can do well].”