Black Caps’ winning chase pleases Hesson

January 21, 2015 10:37:21 UK

Kane Williamson’s century helped New Zealand defeat Sri Lanka.

Coach Mike Hesson praised New Zealand for their ability to respond to pressure, after they won the fourth ODI by four wickets against Sri Lanka in Nelson.

The Black Caps edged ahead 2-1 in the nine-game series thanks to a century from Kane Williamson and big hitting late-on from Corey Anderson and Luke Ronchi.

Chasing under pressure is important. We are going to have a lot of chases in the next few months and we are going to be in pressure situations.

Mike Hesson

Their chances of chasing down 277 looked slim when Ross Taylor was their third man out with just 63 on the board at the start of the 16th over.

But Williamson then put on 88 for the fourth wicket with Grant Elliott (44 from 58 balls) and combined with Anderson to add 79 more before he was out for 103 off 107 balls.

Ronchi kept the runs coming, with three sixes in his 32 from 15 balls, before Daniel Vettori hit the winning runs with 11 balls remaining.

New Zealand are 1.53 to win the fifth ODI against Sri Lanka, who are 2.50.

Hesson felt the way the way his batsmen had responded, increasing the confidence carried over from the gritty series win over Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates, stood them in good stead for the World Cup where they are 7.00 outright.

“It’s nice to win games when you’re under the pump,” said the coach. “I think that is something we pride ourselves on. We were under pressure at different stages and I thought we fronted up pretty well.

“Chasing under pressure is important. We are going to have a lot of chases in the next few months and we are going to be in pressure situations.”

Williamson scored his fifth one-day century, but Hesson was pleased that other players also made important contributions with the bat.

He added: “Different players stood up … a number of players contributed to that win. Kane should get plenty of accolades for his 100, but there were a lot of mini-contributions that led to the outcome of the game.”

Tim Southee took 3-59 as the Black Caps fought back after Sri Lanka had put on a century stand for the second wicket.

Mahela Jayawardene hit 94 from 82 balls and Kumar Sangakkara scored 76, but having been 4-245 the Sri Lankans then lost six wickets for just 31.

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