• Fri. Jun 17th, 2022

Australia is hoping Cameron Green with solve its Test all-rounder deficiencies, but across the ditch, New Zealand might have just found its 2-metre match-winner in Kyle Jamieson.

Jan 6, 2021

Australia has not needed too many reminders of the value of a great all-rounder over the years, but the latest is unmissable and right on its doorstep.
Plenty of pundits have charged Cameron Green with spearheading Australia’s cricketing future after the 2-metre-tall 21-year-old made his highly anticipated debut against India last month.
Green has been seen as the answer to Australia’s middle-order woes, while also being capable of bowling through the middle part of an innings to give the strike bowlers a rest.
With an already enviable first-class record, the portents are looking very promising for Western Australia’s latest young talent.
However, on the other side of the Tasman, New Zealand has unearthed its own impressive, six-foot-seven-inch (203cm) blonde talent in Kyle Jamieson who, despite having only played six Test matches, has already made his mark as a bowling all-rounder, taking to Test cricket like a duck to water.
Jamieson takes 11-117 to enter record books
Kyle Jamieson joined some exalted company by taking 11 wickets in a Test match.(Photosport via AP: John Davidson)
On Wednesday, Jamieson tore through the Pakistan batting line-up to lead New Zealand to a four-day, second Test victory over Pakistan at Christchurch’s Hagley Oval.
His match figures of 11-117 are the sixth-best in New Zealand Test history.
Only two players sit ahead of the 26-year-old in the rankings; Daniel Vettori (12-149 vs Australia and 12-170 vs Bangladesh) and Sir Richard Hadlee (15-123 vs Australia, 11-58 vs India and 11-102 vs West Indies).
“I suppose it’s not too bad,” Jamieson said when told of his achievement after the match.
“Just to have my name somewhere alongside those guys is pretty special.”
Jamieson took 5-69 in the first innings and 6-48 in the second his third and fourth five-wicket haul respectively from just 11 innings while adding an unbeaten 22-ball 30 in New Zealand’s only batting innings.
Kyle Jamieson has bowled 11 innings in Test cricket. He’s taken five wickets four times.(Photosport via AP: John Davidson)
The innings and 176 run-victory ensured New Zealand claimed both its home Test series this summer 2-0 to move back to number one spot in the Test rankings.
It’s part of what has been an excellent year for the Kiwis since their disappointing performance in Australia last summer a series Jamieson was called up for as an injury replacement but did not play.
Since then, New Zealand has won six Test matches in a row part of an unbeaten home streak of 17 matches that included the visit of both England and India.
It’s put New Zealand well into the mix for making the final of the inaugural World Test Championship, alongside India, England and Australia.
‘Unplayable’ Jamieson bolsters impressive pace quartet
Kyle Jamieson, second left, already stands tall in the company of New Zealand Test royalty.(Photosport via AP: John Davidson)
Jamieson said he saw himself as the “fourth prong” of New Zealand’s pace quartet behind Tim Southee, Trent Boult and the injured Neil Wagner and has clearly benefited from coming into a team firing on all cylinders.
“From my point of view, I get to sit back and watch these guys go to work,” Jamieson said.
“[I] just try to sit back and learn and observe what these world-class guys have done for a number of years.
“When you’ve got world-class players around you it certainly makes your job a little bit easier.”
He might think of himself as a fourth wheel, but former Kiwi skipper Brendan McCullum described Jamieson’s deliveries as “unplayable” as he took charge of the match with some scintillating fast bowling.
“It’s one thing to just hang in there long enough and bore guys out, but he’s actually bowling unplayable deliveries,” McCullum said.
“That’s a really exciting aspect.”
Jamieson can bat too and even started out his cricketing life as a batsman before being converted during his time with the New Zealand Under 19 side.
In his six Test innings so far, he has scored 226 runs at an average of 56.50, with a high score of 51 against the West Indies.
His first-class average, 21.47 from 44 innings, indicates room for improvement, but as a number seven or eight Test batsman, he could certainly add valuable runs.
Green’s Test introduction a baptism of fire
Cameron Green is yet to take a wicket in Test cricket.(AP: James Elsby)
While Jamieson has come into a team that has been in fine form, Green has come into a batting line-up that has been struggling and a bowling line-up that has, frankly, not needed much help.
Green’s introduction to the Test side was, in part, to assist with a shaky middle order but since he has come in, the usually dependable top order albeit one missing David Warner has let the team down.
Instead of being able to come in at number six with a mountain of runs of the board, Green has come out with the score at 4-65, 4-124 and 4-98, putting the 21-year-old under extraordinary pressure before he even faces a ball.
Cameron Green showed what he is capable of with a well-constructed 45 in Australia’s second innings at the MCG.(AP: Asanka Brendon Ratnayake)
His well-crafted 45 in the second innings in Melbourne and a first-class batting average of 51.44 from 34 innings with a high score of 158 shows that with more support, a big score is just around the corner.
Meanwhile, Jamieson is yet to taste defeat in a Test match with New Zealand and, if the cards fall right, could yet line up against Australia in the final of the World Test Championship that is scheduled for later this year.
Australia’s recent history against New Zealand-born all-rounders has not been overly pleasant but if Jamieson’s trajectory continues, there could be more pain on the way.