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Kyle Jamieson: Fortunate to play in the same era as New Zealand's greatest quicks

'What Tim and Trent and Wags have done in the last eight-ten years is nothing short of world-class'

Alagappan Muthu
Alagappan Muthu
It looked like Kyle Jamieson could do no wrong on Saturday. He'd started it well, making sure he had a present waiting for his girlfriend for her birthday and ended it with his second five-wicket haul in Test cricket.
"I actually sorted it out myself this morning," the 25-year old said after the day's play. "I was very wise and went down and saw the concierge and hopefully she's not listening to this before she's walked back into the room and seen hopefully a nice bouquet of flowers sitting there."
Not unlike how he needed the hotel staff's help to surprise his partner, Jamieson needed his team-mates' help to reduce West Indies to 124 for 8. The rookie will pick up the headlines for figures of 13-4-34-5 but his perspectives are quite clear.
"It's called, I guess, a four-pronged attack," Jamieson said. "And I guess, myself very much being the fourth prong of that. You look at Tim [Southee] and Trent [Boult] and Wags [Neil Wagner] and the way they've gone about their business in the last eight-ten years and it's nothing short of world-class.
"And I think for me, firstly to be in the environment around those guys, I learn so much. And then to come in and bowl off the back of what those guys are doing, it sort of makes my job a little easier.
"I just consider myself very fortunate to play in the same team as those guys and play in the same era as three of New Zealand's greatest ever quicks."
Jamieson's rise adds a new dimension to that already potent bowling attack. His strength is pitching the ball up. His advantage is his height, which often leaves opposition batsmen trapped in their crease. Harnessing his strength and exploiting their weakness right from his very first over in this game, the fast bowler came within inches of a first Test hat-trick.
It all began when Jamieson had John Campbell caught at second slip. Then he got a timely piece of advice. "Yeah, managed a wicket early and then I think it was Daryl Mitchell that said, 'Try a big innie,' and it worked and so that was probably his wicket more than mine really."
Now Roston Chase was gone, bowled neck and crop by an unplayable inswinger. Two wickets in two balls and in walked Jermaine Blackwood.
Jamieson had already bagged a hat-trick this summer and outlandish as it was he wasn't ruling out his chances of picking up another. "I thought I'd be pretty lucky to try and get that twice in a season. But worth a try anyway."
In front of a full house at the Basin Reserve, and playing the highest form of the game, he rapped Blackwood on the pads. Everybody went up in appeal - the whole team and the whole crowd. The umpire's finger didn't. And DRS agreed with his call.
"I knew it was missing. I think it was more playing off the crowd a little bit. It was such a great atmosphere. Not really sure if you can beat, I guess, the Basin Reserve on a day like today. So yeah, we thought why not, we'll give it a shot. And unfortunately it was just doing a bit too much"
Jamieson wasn't the only one enjoying time under the spotlight. Wagner had given New Zealand a rollicking start on day two...with bat in hand.
Playing his 50th Test match, the left-arm seamer hit 66 off 42 balls and remained unbeaten as his team put up a massive 460 runs on the board.
"Oh, it was great entertainment for everyone," Jamieson said. "You know, for the crowd first and foremost and also for us in the changeroom. It was awesome watching him bat the way he did and to get his first Test fifty. He can certainly hold a bat. So for him to get his reward was awesome to see."
What was Wagner like at the end of the innings? "Oh, he was pretty chuffed. He was pretty nervous when he came off at lunch on 48 not out. He had Boult and Southee in his ear giving him a little stick. And yeah, he was pretty chuffed, as he should be I think, with the way he batted and the way he brought that intent in the back end of the innings."
New Zealand are only two wickets away from having to decide whether they want to make West Indies follow-on for a second time this series. But Jamieson insisted the team isn't thinking that far ahead at the moment. "No talk of that yet. We'll just sort of enjoy today and we'll reflect on how that's gone and what we need to do to take two more wickets and then it'll probably be a conversation for I guess guys above my paygrade."

Alagappan Muthu is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo