New Zealand v West Indies, 1st T20, Auckland January 11, 2014

We were hurting after Hamilton defeat - McCullum

ESPNcricinfo staff

New Zealand's 81-run win in the first T20 in Auckland, according to their captain Brendon McCullum, was the best response to their defeat in the final ODI in Hamilton, which he said had left them hurting.

"We were hurting after that," McCullum said. "[It's] well documented that it was a missed opportunity and a poor performance from us, and West Indies, obviously, when they had their backs against the wall, they delivered their best performance of the tour. So we knew that this game is very important for us to try and wrest back some momentum in the series, and I thought the way we played today is pretty close to how we want to play as a short-version team."

With New Zealand playing just one more T20 before the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh, McCullum said the second match of the series would be important in terms of helping them find their best combination.

"I think we talked before this series about how few opportunities we've got leading into that T20 World Cup and how we've got to ensure we've got our combinations and our plans right, and I think it was a pretty good blueprint today of how we want to play," he said.

"Yes, we need to ensure we're ready to go to that T20 World Cup but we've also got an opportunity to close out the series and we missed one the other day [the Hamilton ODI], and if we're serious about trying to win big tournaments then you've got to be closing out those sorts of games that Wellington presents so a big challenge for us, and I look forward to see how we respond."

Another positive to emerge for New Zealand was the pace Adam Milne bowled at, clocking speeds of 150kph and upwards on occasion.

"I think at one stage it was 153 [kph], I saw it on the radar, and I'm pretty sure the crowd enjoyed it as well, and I think Ronc [Luke Ronchi] was standing quite a way back there, so I was really pleased for Adam today too," McCullum said. "I think he's bowled reasonably well for us without much luck, and I think when you bowl as quick as what he does, at times you're going to travel. But tonight we probably saw him have his best performance for us in the black shirt, so I'm really pleased for him and hopefully he'll gain a lot of confidence out of that."

Ronchi, the wicketkeeper, said Milne's performance boded well for his future.

"On a wicket that wasn't very quick, he had some good pace going, so that was the biggest thing," he said. "You can tell more of a difference on those slow wickets, and he was hitting the gloves well. I was standing a good distance back. He's got a good future for New Zealand cricket if he keeps going with that sort of pace. He's 21; he's going to be really good for us."

Ronchi had had a poor run in the ODI series, scoring just 34 runs in four innings. Coming in at 104 for 5 with 7.1 overs to go, he scored an unbeaten 25-ball 48 to help New Zealand set West Indies a target of 190. Ronchi said he felt good to repay the selectors' faith in him.

"Yeah, it was really good, actually," he said. "I've been feeling good through this whole series, just not putting it on the board, I guess, and last innings I felt I was going well till I stepped on the stumps. But today it was really nice to contribute, but it was the same thing, I still had a little bit of time to get myself in and kick into gear. It was nice to repay the faith they've shown me so far, so it was really good."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Android on January 13, 2014, 3:39 GMT

    @G Wilson. Gayle and Pollard fail as soon as the ball swings in air or off the seam. "Thrash?"

  • Dummy4 on January 12, 2014, 18:54 GMT

    with that being said , i dont really care much for hit & giggle 'cricket'. If Milne isnt in the squad , scratch that the team for the Tests vs India then the kiwi cricket board needs their heads examined. bowling consistently around 90 mph is no joke. & he has been playing 1st class cricket. If Brendon can get 4 3 over spells out of Milne chances r he will get wickets, especially against India. + Wagner isnt exactly pulling his weight is he? averaging almost 40 , strike rate almost 70 & he's 6 years older. Boult & Anderson already fill the left arm pacer slot. he should @ least be in the squad.

  • Dummy4 on January 12, 2014, 18:18 GMT

    i'd like to see milne bowl @ 150+ KPH vs Gayle n Pollard in Bangladesh lol . those ball would have to b called birds the way they'd fly.

  • jared on January 12, 2014, 5:08 GMT

    @ Richard Campion play southee, mcclenaghan and milne drop a batter like munro you don't need to bat that deep in t-20, munro is very effective against spinners but folds against the quicks, teams will work that out pretty quick, other than that the team looks good, still have munro in the mix but he'd be my 12th man most games.

  • Dummy4 on January 11, 2014, 21:37 GMT who do you drop. Do you play Mclenaghen and Milne and leave Southee out. Tim didnt bowl well last night. I was impressed with anderson and Neesham and they can bat well and Nathan McCullum is tops. Just which quicks to play....!!

  • josh on January 11, 2014, 21:29 GMT

    NZ is #1 team in the world at this point, I know the "rankings" have others ahead but if NZ payed as much as ind, aus, eng, and saf they would be way ahead

  • ESPN on January 11, 2014, 19:59 GMT

    Interesting to see bowlers of plus 150 speed. Hope to see some good cricket and competition between bat and ball

  • Dummy4 on January 11, 2014, 18:43 GMT

    Dissapointed that NZ didn't organise 2020s with india especially with World Cup around the corner...

  • Chamara on January 11, 2014, 17:19 GMT

    Are we going back to 80s? "153 kph" That was awesome. Mitchell Johnson changed the way of thinking about fast balling art completely.

  • Steve on January 11, 2014, 16:17 GMT

    Please surprise to another young true fast bowler coming up in Milne. Hope he takes care of fitness routines well and stays injury free. With Shane Bond coaching him and other NZ pacers, their pace bowling attack looks more potent now. With Ryder and Guptil back and looking good, the NZ should be able to compete against most teams this year.

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