Kane Williamson has a very special connect against India. Both his Test and ODI debuts came against the ‘Men in Blue’ back in 2010. In fact, Williamson also has gone toe-to-toe with the current Indian skipper right from the 2008 Under-19 World Cup when both of them were leading their respective sides. Virat Kohli though was fast-tracked to the international scene in that year itself, while Williamson had to wait a couple of years for his opportunity.
However, more than a decade since that Under-19 World Cup, alongside Kohli, Williamson is regarded as one of the best batsmen of the world. The Kiwi skipper might not have the best of records in the 50-over format against India but he has had some memorable performances against them. In 18 innings, he has amassed 733 runs at an average of 40.72 which includes six fifties and a hundred. When India last toured New Zealand back in 2014, Williamson was in top form as he notched up five fifties in a row in the five-match ODI series.
However, the New Zealand skipper hasn’t been in the greatest of forms in recent times. Hence, with another five-match rubber against an in-form Indian side, Williamson will want to replicate that 2014 form and get back on track leading up to the World Cup.
Thus, with the ODI series to start tomorrow, let’s look back at some of the top Williamson knocks against India in the 50-over format.
#3 88 – Wellington (2014)
In the 2014 series, it was all Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson. While Taylor notched up a couple of tons, Williamson showed some supreme consistency as he racked up five fifties on the trot.
It was the fifth game of the series and with the Kiwis being 3-0 up (with one game ending in a tie), they looked to finish the series unbeaten. After being put into bat at the Westpac Stadium in Wellington, the Kiwis had a slow start. They were 31/1 at the end of the first powerplay. Williamson, who had walked out to bat in the 10th over, also had an indifferent start as he crawled to 6 off 15 balls. However, Taylor’s arrival not only gave some impetus to the innings but Williamson found fluency as well.
After the initial struggle, Williamson rotated the strike much better as the innings wore on and he found the odd boundary here and there. Alongside Taylor, he took the New Zealand innings forward and brought up his fifth fifty on the bounce (in the 30th over). He got to fifty in 62 balls but accelerated once he went past the landmark. However, he missed out on the three-figure mark yet again (fifth time in the series) as he was dismissed on 88.
However, after the initial wobble, it was Williamson’s innings that set the platform for the big score as the Kiwis finished at 303 and ended up winning the game comfortably.