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Kane Williamson addresses retirement rumours: Confirms commitment to New Zealand cricket

New Zealand cricket star Kane Williamson has clarified recent rumours about his potential retirement from international cricket. Despite turning down the central contract for the 2024-25 season and stepping down as white-ball captain, Williamson has affirmed his dedication to representing New Zealand, emphasizing his intention to continue playing as long as he can contribute effectively.

Kane Williamson addresses retirement rumorus: Confirms commitment to New Zealand cricket osf
First Published Jun 20, 2024, 3:09 PM IST

New Zealand's ace batter Kane Williamson has addressed the swirling rumors regarding his retirement from international cricket after he turned down the central contract for the 2024-25 season. Despite stepping down from the central contract and his role as white-ball captain, Williamson has reassured fans of his unwavering commitment to the national team and expressed his desire to continue playing for as long as he can contribute effectively.

Declining the Central Contract

Kane Williamson's decision to decline the central contract came in the wake of New Zealand's early exit from the 2024 T20 World Cup held in the West Indies and the USA. The 33-year-old batter also stepped down as the white-ball captain, a role he has held with distinction. Williamson has been a linchpin in New Zealand's batting lineup, consistently performing across all formats of the game.

T20 World Cup Disappointment

The T20 World Cup proved to be a challenging tournament for Williamson, both as a captain and a batter. New Zealand's campaign ended prematurely with unexpected losses to Afghanistan and the West Indies, preventing them from advancing to the Super 8 stages. This early exit was particularly surprising given New Zealand's strong track record in ICC tournaments over the last decade.

"My priority still is absolutely playing for New Zealand"

Upon returning to New Zealand, Williamson spoke to reporters, emphasizing his ongoing dedication to the Black Caps. He expressed his passion for representing his country and his intent to remain part of the team as long as he can add value.

"My priority still is absolutely playing for New Zealand. I want to play as long as I can - I love playing for New Zealand. I've really enjoyed my time captaining and it's been a privilege and an honor to do that for a number of years. Being a part of this team is so dear to me and I want to remain in that community for as long as I can, as long as I'm offering and adding value," Williamson stated.

Williamson's performance in the T20 World Cup was below par, with single-figure scores in losses to the West Indies (1) and Afghanistan (9). He did manage to stay unbeaten on 18 runs in New Zealand's consolation win against Papua New Guinea.

"2028 Is a number of years away"

Looking ahead, Williamson mentioned his aspiration to continue playing international cricket until 2028 but acknowledged the importance of taking things one year at a time. He emphasized the need to manage his time and fitness carefully, with the support of New Zealand Cricket.

"In terms of a timeframe, it's difficult to say. Want to keep being fit, doing as well as I can, keep trying to improve. That [2028] is a number of years away and it's a year at a time. All major events and key series are things that whet the appetite and are an exciting prospect. They are down the line. Managing my time as well as I can after doing it for so many years is important and I know New Zealand Cricket are really supportive of that," Williamson elaborated.

The Future of New Zealand's White-Ball Captaincy

With Williamson stepping down as white-ball captain, New Zealand Cricket faces the task of appointing a new leader for the format. Williamson's captaincy has been remarkable, leading New Zealand to the finals of the 2019 ODI World Cup and the 2021 T20 World Cup, and to victory in the inaugural World Test Championship (WTC) in 2021.

In conclusion, while Kane Williamson's recent decisions have sparked retirement rumours, his commitment to New Zealand cricket remains strong. Fans can look forward to seeing the prolific batter continue to contribute to the team, albeit with a different focus as he manages his career moving forward. He will also be participating is different T20 leagues across the globe for now he has conformed that, he will be taking part in the SA20 2025.

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