NZ – The Step Up from Domestic to Test Level

Posted on November 24, 2010 by

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In New Zealand it is often talked about how much of a step up it is from the New Zealand domestic level to the international level. There are many different opinions on how to fix this, these are just a few that I can think of. They could help our domestic level and ultimately help our international selectors by putting more names on the table.

One reason for the difference in quality is down to the fact that the domestic players don’t play against top quality international players often enough. When you look at the IPL, they bring in the best players that are currently in the international game. These players then play against India’s domestic players and their up-and-coming talent. New Zealand has started to catch on to this idea by bringing in; Brett Lee, Shaun Tait, Herschelle Gibbs, David Warner and Brad Hodge for this season’s domestic competition. However bringing in more international players costs money, where this money is going to come from, I don’t know.

However New Zealand cricket could also do the complete opposite. Instead of bringing international players here, why not send the top set of our domestic players overseas? New Zealand could try to put a team in the Australian Sheffield Shield, where the competition is a lot stiffer. If we could get our top 12 or 13 players playing in Australia, the Blackcaps would then have at least 2 high quality squads to choose from. Some of our Blackcaps are already playing in Australia, such as Daniel Vettori and Ross Taylor. The problem with this option is without our 25 best players playing in New Zealand, the rest of New Zealand cricket is going to drop in quality.

One very easy, very simple solution to this cricketing quality crisis is to attract better coaches. Why not just bring in coaches that can help batsman with simple flaws? With most of New Zealand’s batsmen, it is basically a case of them having one or two simple problems with their technique. This isn’t just our domestic players either; it’s also our international players. With the help of a good coach, these problems could be easily eliminated. This would mean more competition for other batsmen and bowlers in New Zealand and a wider pool for the International selectors to choose from.

These are obvious solutions that have their positives and negatives, and none are quick fix solutions. However all of them could work with some careful negotiating. But at the moment New Zealand’s domestic level is too low in quality to sustain a top level International test team. This is causing our international side to drop in quality, and it is causing them to lose games that could easily have been won.

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Posted by Cameron Beck