New Zealand Cricket
Williamson steps down as Test skipper, Southee to lead NZ
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Kane Williamson will step down as captain of the New Zealand Test team as pacer Tim Southee taking over the side. Williamson will continue to captain the Blackcaps in ODIs and T20Is and he has stated his desire to play all three formats for New Zealand.
Southee, who has 346 internationals to his name and has led the T20 side on 22 occasions, will become New Zealand’s 31st Test captain when he leads the team on this month’s Test tour to Pakistan.
“Captaining the BLACKCAPS in Test cricket has been an incredibly special honour. For me, Test cricket is the pinnacle of the game and I’ve enjoyed the challenges of leading the side in the format. Captaincy comes with an increased workload on and off the field and at this stage of my career I feel the time is right for this decision,” Williamson said.
“After discussions with NZC, we felt that continuing to captain the white-ball formats was preferable with two World Cups in the next two years. I’m excited to support Tim as captain and Tom as vice-captain. Having played with both of them for most of my career, I’m confident they’ll do a great job. Playing for the BLACKCAPS and contributing in all three formats is my number one priority and I’m looking forward to the cricket we have ahead” he added.
Williamson has captained the Test team on 38 occasions (22 wins, 8 draws, 10 losses) since assuming the role from Brendon McCullum in 2016.
Southee, the current Sir Richard Hadlee Medal winner, said it was humbling to be asked to lead the Test side.
“It’s been a surreal few days and it’s just a massive honour to be appointed as Test captain. I love Test cricket, it’s the ultimate challenge and I’m really excited by the opportunity to lead the team in this format,” Southee said.
“Kane’s been an outstanding Test captain and I’m looking forward to working with Gary on how we can build on that.”
The two Test series against Pakistan starts in Karachi on December 26 and concludes in Multan from January 3.