Admirable recovery capped historic series - Snedden

New Zealand's fighting defiance to create history at the end of today's drawn second Test with the West Indies at Grenada won the admiration of New Zealand Cricket's chief executive Martin Snedden.

A first series victory in the West Indies had been well taken by the TelstraClear Black Caps and Snedden said it was an outstanding effort by relative newcomers to the side, Scott Styris and Robbie Hart, to help secure the draw.

"It is much more satisfying to fight your way out of trouble than being saved by the weather," Snedden told CricInfo today.

"I have admiration for the way they fought themselves out of a hole today.

"It has been a huge achievement to win a first Test series in the West Indies. While any overseas Test victory is a significant effort, this was especially satisfying," he said.

People of an older age would recall the days, not so long ago, when the West Indies caused havoc in world cricket and it was nice now to have a New Zealand team returning the favour, he said.

From a New Zealand point of view the tour had been significant for the way the side was consolidating itself.

"For the first time we absolutely deserve our third position on the ICC Test Championship," he said.

New Zealand had been performing more consistently than any other side in the world other than Australia and South Africa. It would possibly have struggled against Pakistan in the recently abandoned second Test, but then so would most other teams with Shoaib Akhtar in his menacing form.

The performances of Styris and Hart had been good to see and underlined the greater depth of players that was emerging.

It was also a good sign for domestic cricket that players did have the ability to step up.

"Both players are products of our domestic cricket rather than our elite programme.

"The sharp return of Shane Bond has shown how useful it is to have a top-class fast bowler with the ability to rattle batsmen.

"He has a tidier, more sustainable bowling action and that is fantastic to see," he said.

Snedden was full of admiration for Stephen Fleming's captaincy and said day one of the first Test had been the most crucial part of the series and Fleming's performance in scoring a century, and taking control, had inspired the side to a Test, and series, win.

Fleming continued to grow in the captaincy and his batting was improving.

"Captaincy at such a young age was a huge burden for Stephen. It was too early and there was too much pressure especially when at that stage he was not a totally established Test batsman. Some of the criticism he received would have been hard to take.

"But he coped with that and continued fighting rather than throwing in the towel," Snedden said.

There was a significant development of leadership potential in the side with Craig McMillan and Daniel Vettori both possible future leaders while Hart, with his extensive first-class captaincy experience, was another who could help the leadership in the side.

And Snedden said when Chris Cairns was in the side he also offered significant leadership back-up for Fleming.

As well as providing Bond with good preparation for the West Indies tour, the exercise of taking players to Darwin to prepare for the Test side of the tour had also been worthwhile.

"Mark Richardson showed that he is a class Test opener and like Hart, and Chris Martin who didn't get the chance to show it, they showed the benefits of that.

"And that second innings partnership between Richardson and Lou Vincent was also crucial, there was a bit of pressure on them when nearly 100 runs behind," he said.