March 22, 2023
Tom Latham sets sights on WTC final as NZ shift focus after historic series win


First series win in England since 1999 was agency focus, says vice-captain

New Zealand’s series win in England is their first since 1999 and so they have a possibility so as to add the inaugural World Test Championship title subsequent week once they play India on the Ageas Bowl.

Which is the larger prize? “Both sounds pretty good,” Tom Latham, their vice-captain, grinned after main them to victory at Edgbaston. “From our point of view, it was about coming here and focusing on these first two Test matches against England and trying to continue doing what we’ve been doing over a couple of years now. Now that we’ve ticked them off, it’s important that our focus shifts to India in a couple of days.

“It’s a unbelievable achievement from the group. I feel it is essential that we have fun with one another. It hasn’t been carried out since ’99. For us to return right here as a gaggle, it was about attempting to play our model of cricket and I assumed we did that actually nicely over the 4 days and received our rewards on the finish.”

While New Zealand’s recent record against England has been excellent – they have won four and drawn three of their last seven Tests against them, dating back to 2015 – their away record against the big three of India, England and Australia had been poor since that 1999 triumph, with simply two victories of their earlier 39 makes an attempt. Latham stated that his recollections of seeing groups battle on earlier excursions made the victory even higher.

“I definitely keep in mind staying up late, watching groups come over to England and enjoying Test cricket – at Lord’s, and all these iconic grounds. For us to return right here and put a efficiency on the board that was true to us was actually essential.

“It was about trying to do what we do really well and I thought we did. [It’s] well documented that ’99 was the last time we’d won here and we have been here a couple of times in recent years and haven’t quite got the rewards. It’s certainly an achievement that’s worth celebrating.”

New Zealand’s series win additionally took them again to No. 1 within the ICC’s Test rankings, leapfrogging India, their upcoming opponents. They reached the summit for the primary time earlier this 12 months after beating Pakistan, earlier than India nudged previous them following their 3-1 series win in opposition to England in March.

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