Oram wants sustained dominance
Jacob Oram, the New Zealand allrounder, has said the ruthlessness the Test team showed in beating Zimbabwe in three days in Napier was a sign that New Zealand cricket was developing depth. Oram has retired from Tests but will join the squad for the three ODIs and two Twenty20 internationals. He said it was important New Zealand continued their dominance of Zimbabwe to show they had progressed.
"That Test was not only a sign of the changing conditions Zimbabwe will have to deal with, but also New Zealand cricket as a whole creating a little bit of momentum and depth," Oram told the New Zealand Herald. "That obviously augurs well not only for this series but for when South Africa tour in the near future.
"The best sides I have played against - Australia five or six years ago, India in their own conditions - once they got their tails up they were near-unstoppable. I'm not saying we're at that level, but we are taking small steps towards that."
Oram has struggled with injuries through his career and, after missing trips to Bangladesh and India in 2010, was not guaranteed of a place in the 2011 World Cup squad. He made a comeback in New Zealand's 2010-11 home series against Pakistan and went on to play a key role in their World Cup campaign. Oram, 33, said he has stopped letting injuries frustrate him.
"I've grown out of caring about my injuries. When I was trying to play all three formats it used to get me down, and did get frustrating. But I'm over it now. I try my hardest to get right for cricket and if something happens I don't lose sleep over it because I know I've done all I can to play."
There will be increased competition for the allrounder's slot in New Zealand's limited-overs XI with Canterbury's Andrew Ellis being added to the ODI squad and Auckland's Colin de Grandhomme making it to the Twenty20 squad. Oram's numbers in the domestic Twenty20 and List A competition have not been impressive - he averaged just 6.50 with the bat and took five wickets in six games in the HRV Cup and has taken two wickets in four games in the Ford Trophy. He, however, said he was bowling well.
"The ball is coming out well, the figures suggest I'm bowling okay, I felt good during the HRV Cup and I'm fine to go."
The first ODI between New Zealand and Zimbabwe is on February 3 in Dunedin.