Williamson non-committal on captaincy future but still passionate about New Zealand leadership

By Sports Desk June 22, 2022

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson was non-committal on his future but insists he is passionate about the leadership in his side.

Williamson has passed 50 just once in his past eight Test innings, with his most recent century in the five-day game coming in January 2021, when he scored 238 against Pakistan in Christchurch.

Former Black caps bowler Simon Doull, who played 32 Tests for his country before moving into commentary, suggested Williamson should relinquish his role to focus on delivering with the bat.

That move would not be an unfamiliar one, given Joe Root has posted centuries in each of his previous two international red-ball outings after resigning as England captain.

"I just don't know about the longevity of Kane Williamson the captain," Doull told The Guardian. "He is, without doubt, the best player we've ever produced outside of Richard Hadlee.

"He is world-class and I'd love him to be just the best player we've ever seen, and if that means giving up the Test captaincy to prolong his career, I think he should.

"He's never been a lover of doing the media – he's just not that guy – he's a real cricket guy, he loves the game, studies the game.

"I just don't know that he can sustain all three formats. I would rather he was just New Zealand's one-day and T20 captain."

Doull suggested Tom Latham, who stepped in when Williamson missed the second Test against England due to COVID-19, is ready to take the reins.

Williamson offered assurances he is still passionate about the role as he insisted his focus was on developing New Zealand as a team.

"The picture of leadership in this side is something I'm very passionate about," Williamson said ahead of the third Test at Headingley against England, who have already won the series.

"Certainly I love playing for my country and there are a number of leaders in this team that share that passion to take steps forward and become a better side.

"Our focus is to keep getting better. We are up against a strong English side who are always tough to play against. It's trying to learn from some of those lessons.

"We've had two really good games, they have had some special performances that have driven them forward."

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