Kane Williamson: ‘We haven’t put out our best performance yet’

The New Zealand captain hopes his team hits the reset button in the knockout stage, where it is likely to qualify despite a 119-run defeat against England.

From being unbeaten to suffering three consecutive defeats — the scenario has changed for New Zealand over the last few days. A 119-run defeat to England — its heaviest defeat yet — means it still hasn’t made it to the semifinals, but is likely to go through at the expense of Pakistan.

According to captain Kane Williamson, it is important to hit the reset button to succeed in the knockout stage. “In some ways a [reset] happens on its own. If you are in a knockout stage or a semifinal, anything can happen on the day. And we know from our perspective, we haven’t put out our best performance yet and we know when we do that gives us our best chance of beating anybody,” Williamson said.

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He also believes that it is important to “have a bit of a break” ahead of the crucial stage. “If we are fortunate enough to be in the semifinal, we have a break and need guys to come together to go out and have that freshness to play with the freedom that allows us to play our best cricket,” Williamson said.

‘Important learnings’

In the tournament so far, batting has been an area of concern for New Zealand. While Williamson has been impressive throughout, while Ross Taylor and Martin Guptill are yet to fire. “There are important learnings to take note of on some difficult surfaces. We need to try and better for having had those experiences,” he said.

“It would be nice to be more successful in those scenarios. I don’t want to take anything away from England, they outplayed us regardless of conditions and deserved their win,” Williamson said.

“We have to try and take smarter options. We need to take partnerships longer and deeper,” Williamson said.