The Blackcaps have the honour – and the pressure – of representing one of the world’s most sport-loving countries. But New Zealand’s cricketers seem to manage, proving you can play to win while keeping the nation’s famous sense of perspective on life. Success was famously slow in arriving at Test level, but no other nation so applied its strengths to the shorter formats of the game. Today, no global XI would leave out New Zealand’s big players, who have the power, skill and presence to turn any match. Take a seat with New Zealand Cricket Tickets from Ticketbis.
'World famous in New Zealand' - cricket culture within the global game
In Eden Park – a one day international and Test venue – New Zealand has one of the finest sports stadiums in the Southern Hemisphere. However, it also boasts a number of grounds with a unique atmosphere, such as Dunedin’s University Oval, the beautifully rural feel of Hagley, and Seddon Park in Waikato, once likened to a “Test wicket, set on a village green”. And with a thriving national set-up and grassroots sports clubs, there’s no shortage of support.
No individual defines a national sport – but Richard Hadlee came close. One of the greatest all-rounders of any era, he played in the side that defeated England for the first time, and in 1985 crushed Australia in Brisbane. It was far from a one-man performance; an immense century by Martin Crowe gave Hadlee the platform to attack in the second innnings. However, his 15 wickets in the match – and a half-century – wrote him into sporting history.
Since then, many other greats have emerged. Corey Anderson’s explosive power-hitting broke a world record for the fastest century. A shrewd cricketing brain and brilliant stroke-play made Chris Cairns an inspirational figure, while only someone with the forceful cricketing genius of Brendon McCullum could have equalled him as a captain.
Another side of New Zealand Cricket
With Kiwis having starred from the Caribbean to the IPL, New Zealand cricket watchers have plenty to cheer. But it’s the shared sporting culture – and a sense of humour - that makes it all worthwhile.
Mark Richardson’s disciplined batting masked a gentle sense of self-irony. A ponderous outfielder, he would challenge the slowest member of a competing side to a sprint race… and ended with a record even better than his Test average.
Then, in the 2000s, in a flurry of PR-driven kit deals, the world’s cricket teams emerged onto the T20 catwalk. Delightfully, New Zealand took the field against Australia in a beige kit that echoed their 1980s glory days – then posed for a team photo with retro sweat-bands, sun hats and aviator shades.