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Williamson to lead NZ in all formats

NZN 28/04/2016 By Robert Lowe

Star batsman Kane Williamson has been named as New Zealand cricket captain in all three formats.

Williamson, who led the Black Caps to the World Twenty20 semi-finals in India in March after Brendon McCullum's international retirement, has skippered New Zealand 36 times in short-form games.

He will become the country's 29th Test captain on the tour of Zimbabwe and South Africa in July and August.

Coach Mike Hesson says consideration was given to splitting up the captaincy, but that wasn't deemed necessary given that Williamson is a regular team member in each format.

He says the way Williamson operated during the World T20 shows he has his own leadership style.

"He's very engaging and quite calm in how he goes about things," Hesson told journalists on Thursday.

"He likes to involve all his senior players and they certainly buy into that.

"The World T20 was the point he was really able to take team and treat it as his own, rather than just be a stop-gap measure."

Confirmation of Williamson's appointment comes two weeks after he named Wisden's Leading Cricketer in the World.

He had a stellar 2015, amassing 2692 international runs, the third highest annual total of all time, and topped the Test batting rankings.

Asked what effect getting the captaincy on a permanent basis might have on Williamson's batting, Hesson said the 25-year-old right-hander was good at separating the two roles, "which is a skill that not many are too good at".

"I guess history shows that his performance certainly hasn't dropped; at times it has improved," he said.

"I think he just has that ability to get into his little bubble when he bats and hopefully we can keep that."

Williamson, who is playing in the Indian Premier League, said his appointment was an honour and he was lucky to have an experienced core of players around him for support.

He also paid tribute to the work done by McCullum, saying he had learned a lot from his predecessor.

"The culture that he and Mike have cultivated has been a huge part of this team's success in recent times," he said in a statement.

"We not only have good players, but good people too, and that certainly makes any captain's job easier."

KANE WILLIAMSON'S STATS

NZ debut: v India, August 2010, Dambulla, ODI.

Tests: 48 (4037 runs, 49.23 average)

ODIs: 93 (3666, 47.00)

T20s: 35 (967, 34.53)

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