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Long wait worth it for de Grandhomme

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 18/11/2016 Daniel Gilhooly

Four years after a brief flirtation with the international limited overs formats Colin de Grandhomme unfurled a memorable Test debut for New Zealand. © Marty Melville/AFP/Getty Images Four years after a brief flirtation with the international limited overs formats Colin de Grandhomme unfurled a memorable Test debut for New Zealand. Colin de Grandhomme is relieved he didn't follow through every time he thought about giving away cricket.

Four years after a brief flirtation with the international limited overs formats, the Harare-born allrounder unfurled a memorable Test debut for New Zealand.

He burst from virtual domestic obscurity to snare 6-41 to cripple Pakistan's first innings of 133 in Christchurch.

Renowned more for his big-hitting than his useful bowling, he had only previously claimed one five-wicket bag in 83 first class games.

Becoming a Test strike bowler was never in his thoughts but he harboured hopes of one day wearing whites for his adopted country, even when the prospects began to dim.

"Being cricket, it goes through your head. You think you're going to quit then you find something to make you come back and want it more and more," he said.

"Test cricket is the ultimate so if you make the Test team you'd rather do that than with the white ball."

De Grandhomme is a former Zimbabwe under-19 player who shifted to Auckland in 2006 with his family, including father Laurence, who represented Zimbabwe before they gained Test status.

He admits the occasion nearly got to him on Friday.

"During the anthems I was quite nervy and emotional but quite confident once I was on the field.

"Obviously my first wicket was the best and it was a pretty decent ball."

The victim was Pakistan opener Azhar Ali, who was clean bowled.

Azhar admits it was hard to prepare for de Grandhomme's slower seamers because of a lack of footage.

"Obviously when someone makes his debut, you really can't know how he will play," Azhar said.

"If you have less pace you have more swing and more control as well.

"We knew that but it was his day. It was his first game and he bowled brilliantly."

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