The World Cup heartbreak for New Zealand and their fans is still fresh in memory; England won the trophy on boundary count after the final - both the game and the Super Over - at Lord's on July 14 was tied. But Kane Williamson says it's time to move on and focus on the upcoming challenges as New Zealand get set for a two Test series in Sri Lanka.
"Everyone will talk about it (World Cup final) for a long time, but you move on and the schedule continues. I suppose having three formats, it’s quite refreshing when you change between them. After a lot of white-ball cricket, the Test team’s excited to get back into the groove. It’s quite a different side,” Williamson was quoted as saying by Sportstar.
"After a campaign like the World Cup, involving two months of pretty intense cricket, there’s always a drop in intensity, but it’s also enjoyable when you join a slightly different squad. They bring a really good energy and the guys who were involved in the World Cup are also looking forward to linking up with the Test side."
The series starts on August 14 in Colombo, and will be the first game for both sides in the ICC World Test Championship which began with the Ashes on August 1. Williamson called the championship an opportunity to grow the game.
"The World Test Championship is a refreshing change, an opportunity to grow new interest in Test cricket," he said. "The context around it — it’s almost a tournament-based format where it’s played over two years with a final makes it a very thrilling thing to be involved in.
"Every team is going to try and reach the final, but as we saw even during the World Cup, which was played over two months, the focus was on the immediate result. So the key will be to negotiate the challenges at hand and give ourselves the best chance of getting there (final).
“I suppose over the space of two years, you are going to see several different players potentially involved with squads around the world because it is such a long period and the conditions are so different wherever you are playing.”
Williamson, the Player of the Tournament in the World Cup, drew praise from all quarters for the way he handled himself and led the team during the tournament. By extension, New Zealand too were lauded for playing in the right spirit throughout the tournament, and the captain said it was an important part of their approach to the game.
"The team lays importance on ensuring that we grow the game while playing it,” Williamson said. "It’s always tough to get a very accurate bearing on what sort of an impact we have on those watching us, but one can only hope that it leaves a good impression on everyone."