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Kane Williamson

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Personal information

Full name Kane Stuart Williamson
Born 8 August 1990
Tauranga, New Zealand
Batting Right-handed
Bowling Right-arm off-break
Role Batsman

International information

National side New Zealand (2010-present)
Test debut (Cap 248) 4 November 2010 v India
Last Test 25 November 2021 v India
ODI debut (Cap 161) 10 August 2010 v  India
Last ODI 13 March 2020 v Australia
ODI shirt no. 22
T20I debut (Cap 49) 16 October 2011 v Zimbabwe
Last T20I 14 November 2021 v Australia
T20I shirt no. 22

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Kane Stuart Williamson (born 8 August 1990) is a New Zealand international cricketer who is currently the captain of the New Zealand national team in all formats. He is a right-handed batsman and an occasional off spin bowler.

Williamson made his first-class cricket debut in December 2007. He made his U-19 debut against the touring Indian U-19 team the same year and was named captain of the New Zealand U-19 team for the 2008 U-19 Cricket World Cup. He made his international debut in 2010. Williamson has represented New Zealand at the 2011, 2015 and 2019 editions of the Cricket World Cup and 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2021 editions of the ICC World Twenty20. He made his full-time captaincy debut for New Zealand in the 2016 ICC World Twenty20 in India. He captained New Zealand at the 2019 Cricket World Cup, leading the team to the final and winning the Player of the Tournament award in the process. On 31 December 2020, he reached a Test batting rating of 890, surpassing Steve Smith and Virat Kohli as the number one ranked Test batsmen in the world. He was nominated for the Sir Garfield Sobers Award for ICC Male Cricketer of the Decade, and the award for Test cricketer of the decade. Ian Chappell and Martin Crowe have ranked Williamson among the top four or five Test cricket batsmen, along with Joe Root, Steve Smith, and Virat Kohli of the current era.

Williamson was the only New Zealander to be named in the ICC Test Team of the Decade (2011–2020). The late former New Zealand cricketer, Martin Crowe, noted that, “we’re seeing the dawn of probably our greatest ever batsman” in Williamson.

In June 2021, he captained New Zealand to the inaugural ICC World Test Championship. In November 2021, he led New Zealand to the final of the ICC T20 World Cup.


Early life

Kane Williamson was born on 8 August 1990 in Tauranga, New Zealand. His father Brett was a sales representative who had played under-17 and club cricket in New Zealand and his mother Sandra had been a representative basketball player. He has a twin brother Logan, who is one minute younger than him. The brothers have three older sisters, Anna, Kylie and Sophie. All three were accomplished volleyball players, and Anna and Sophie were in New Zealand age group teams.

Williamson played senior representative cricket at the age of 14 and first-class cricket at 16. He attended Tauranga Boys’ College from 2004–2008, where he was head boy in his final year. He was coached by Pacey Depina who described Williamson as having “a thirst to be phenomenal – but not at anyone else’s expense.” He reportedly scored 40 centuries before he left school.


Domestic career

  • Northern Districts

Williamson made his debut for Northern Districts in 2007 at the age of 17, who he has remained with for the duration of his New Zealand domestic career. He scored his first T20 hundred, on 19 September 2014, making 101* in 49 balls to guide Northern Districts to a comfortable win against Cape Cobras in Champions League Twenty20 2014.

  • English county cricket

Williamson signed for Gloucestershire to play in the 2011 English county season. On 14 August 2013, he signed for Yorkshire for the rest of the season and subsequently signed to return for the 2014 season, when his side won the County Championship. He signed to return the latter part of the 2015 season, but when incumbent overseas player Aaron Finch was not selected for the Australia ODI squad, Yorkshire ultimately chose to extend Finch’s deal in place of Williamson. He subsequently signed a deal for part of the 2016 season.

  • Indian Premier League

In February 2015 Williamson signed for Indian Premier League side Sunrisers Hyderabad. He played for the side in the 2016 season, winning the title, and was retained for the 2017 and 2018 seasons. He captained the side in 2018, replacing David Warner. Under Williamson’s captaincy Sunrisers Hyderabad finished runners-up and he was the season’s leading scorer, with 735 runs. In IPL 2021, Kane took over the captaincy from David Warner in the middle of the season.  However, SRH finished last in the tournament, winning only 3 matches. 


International career

Williamson was 17, when he led the New Zealand Under-19 side in the World Cup in Malaysia in 2008. New Zealand reached the semi-final, where they lost to the eventual champions India. On 24 March 2010, Williamson was named in the New Zealand Test squad for the second Test against Australia, but ultimately he did not play in the match.

Williamson made his One-Day International debut against India on 10 August 2010. He was dismissed for a 9th ball duck. In his second match, he was bowled by Angelo Mathews for a second ball duck. He scored his maiden ODI century against Bangladesh on 14 October 2010 in Dhaka and hence became the youngest centurion in New Zealand’s cricket history. Due to his performance on the Bangladesh tour where New Zealand suffered a 4–0 whitewash, Williamson was selected in the New Zealand Test squad for the tour of India that followed.

Williamson made his Test cricket debut against India at Ahmedabad on 4 November 2010. In his first innings he scored 131 runs off 299 balls and became the eighth New Zealand player to score a century on Test debut.

  • Rising through the ranks

Williamson scored 161 not out against West Indies in June 2014, his second century of the series and helped secure a rare away Test series victory for his side. He finished as the leading overall run scorer in the series with 413 runs, and was denied a double century only by rain, which encouraged skipper Brendon McCullum to declare in the interest of obtaining a result in the match. He was also reported for a suspect bowling action in April 2014, but was cleared in December 2014. His illegal bowling action started after he left high school in order to get a faster release and turn on the ball. His new action essentially reverts him to his action in high school, with a more side-on approach and less wrist and elbow deviation. He was also named as captain ahead of the ODI and Twenty20 series against Pakistan as Brendon McCullum was rested.

Williamson scored 100 off 69 balls against Zimbabwe at Bulawayo, which at the time was the second fastest century by a New Zealander in a One-Day International. He also established one of the most potent top-order partnership with Ross Taylor, with Williamson himself being the most prolific number-three batsman for the national side since former captain Stephen Fleming. As a fielder, his position is predominantly at gully.

In 2015, he started with 69 and 242* against Sri Lanka, with two catches in the field in a man-of-the-match performance. On 3 February 2015, he scored the 99th ODI century in the New Zealand’s history, against Pakistan; Ross Taylor scored the 100th in the same match. He also scored over 700 runs before the 2015 Cricket World Cup in the first two months of the calendar year. On 17 June 2015 he became the fifth-fastest batsmen and fastest New Zealander to score 3,000 runs, getting them in just 78 innings. On 15 November 2015 Williamson and Taylor became the first pair of away batsmen to each score 2nd innings centuries at WACA Ground in Perth.

In December 2015, during the second Test against Sri Lanka, Williamson broke the record for the most Test runs scored in a calendar year by a New Zealander, with 1172 runs. He also ended 2015 with 2692 runs, the highest total across all forms of international cricket for the year, and third highest total in a single year.

He was awarded the T20 Player of the Year by NZC for the 2014-15 season.

  • Captaincy

In March 2016, Williamson assumed the position of captain of New Zealand across all forms of cricket after the retirement of Brendon McCullum, beginning with the World T20I cup in India. He was named as captain of the ‘Team of the Tournament’ by Cricinfo and Cricbuzz. He also picked up NZ player of the year, Test player of the year and the Redpath Cup for top batsman in first class cricket for the second year in a row.

In August 2016, during the Test series against Zimbabwe, Williamson became the thirteenth batsman to score a century against all the other Test playing nations. He completed this in the fewest innings, the quickest time from his Test debut and became the youngest player to achieve this feat.

Williamson set a new record for scoring the most centuries by a New Zealand batsman in Tests, with his 18th, in March 2018 when he score 102 against England at Auckland. Later that year, he scored his 10,000th run in first-class cricket, batting for the English side Yorkshire in the 2018 County Championship. On 8 December 2018, he scored his 19th Test century in the deciding 3rd game in the Pakistan away series. On 7 December 2018, Williamson became the first player from New Zealand to cross 900 rating points in the ICC Test batting rankings. During the 2019 Test series against Bangladesh, Williamson scored 200 not out as New Zealand posted a team total of 715, their highest ever in a Test innings. He also became the fastest New Zealand player to score 6,000 runs in Test cricket.

In April 2019, he was named the captain of New Zealand’s squad for the 2019 Cricket World Cup. During the tournament, he scored an unbeaten 106 to guide New Zealand to victory over South Africa, scoring his 3,000th run as captain of New Zealand in ODIs in the process. On 22 June, Williamson scored 148 runs off 154 balls in a 5-run victory over West Indies, his career best score in ODI cricket. One week later, in the match against Australia, Williamson became the third-fastest batsman, in terms of innings, to score 6,000 runs in ODIs, doing so in his 139th innings. At the end of the World Cup, he was awarded the Player of the Tournament award after becoming the highest scoring captain in a single World Cup, making 578 runs in 10 matches. He was named as captain of the ‘Team of the Tournament’ by the ICC and ESPNCricinfo.

In November 2020, Williamson was nominated for the Sir Garfield Sobers Award for ICC Male Cricketer of the Decade, and the award for Test cricketer of the decade. On 4 December, Williamson scored 251 runs, his highest test score, in the first innings of the first Test against West Indies and helped New Zealand win the match by an innings and 134 runs.


International centuries

As of January 2021, Williamson has scored 24 Test and 13 ODI centuries. His highest score in Test is 251 and 148 in ODIs. He is yet to score a century in T20Is.


Personal life

During the New Zealand vs. Pakistan 2014 ODI series, Williamson donated his entire match fee for all five ODIs to the victims of the 2014 Peshawar school massacre. He bowls and bats right handed but writes left handed. Williamson and his wife Sarah became parents when their daughter was born in 2020. He stood down from the second Test against the West Indies so he could attend the birth.

 

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