Kane Williamson: 'Some of my favourite cricketers have been Indians'

Growing up, the New Zealand skipper idolised Indian batting legend Sachin Tendulkar.

Williamson: "Tendulkar is a legend of the game."   -  AFP

When New Zealand captain Kane Williamson made his international debut against India eight years ago, he was just excited to play in front of Sachin Tendulkar—his childhood idol.

"The first time I met him (Tendulkar) was in my debut game for New Zealand. I was watching him on the field, wondering what he was doing. It was a really nice experience. He is a legend of the game," Williamson said during a promotional event on Sunday adding, "Some of my favourite cricketers have been Indians."

Williamson, who scored 131 in the first innings of the drawn Test, was happy to brush shoulders with some of the biggest names in the game. “There were so many great players in the team. Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman...they are such fantastic people, open to talk about the game of cricket. I was 19-20 and it was a great opportunity to get alongside the legends of the game and pick their brains,” the 27-year-old batsman, considered one of the best in the world, noted.

'The game has evolved'

Meanwhile, Sri Lankan spin legend Muttiah Muralitharan - also in attendance at the event - gave his two cents on how cricket has evolved since his playing days.

"Now the game has grown in different ways. The way batsmen bat, it is not easy to bowl. We did not play too much T20s and in Tests, they don't hit sixes like today. It was easier to bowl during our time,” Muralitharan, bowling coach of Sunrisers, observed.

The wily off-spinner rated Sri Lanka's World Cup winning performance as the high point in his career. “I would cherish my 1996 World Cup win as the most important thing for Sri Lankan cricket. For Sunrisers, it was when we won the IPL trophy in 2016,” Muralitharan said, adding that Sunrisers would be aiming to emulate its title-winning run this year.

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