Black Caps captain urges players to embrace underdog tag to play freely

Updated: Jul 06, 2012, 14:08 PM IST

Kingston (Jamaica): New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson has asked his side to embrace the tag of underdog and play with the freedom that comes with it.

After being thrashed by the West Indies for the third game on the trot, Williamson said he and his teammates’ are backing themselves to turn around the poor form that resulted in a 2-0 loss in the Twenty20 series and a 1-0 deficit in the five match ODI series.

They were beaten by nine wickets in a rain affected ODI at Kingston’s Sabina Park after scoring just 190-9 while batting first.

The West Indies achieved their rain reduced total of 136, with both Chris Gayle and Dwayne Smith scoring unbeaten half centuries and combining for a second wicket unbroken partnership of 130, a website reports.

“There are a lot of challenges for us in this series. The quality opposition [is one challenge], in their own conditions and the personnel we`ve had out with injuries [is another],” said Williamson, having just become Black Caps youngest ever ODI skipper.

BJ Watling`s 98-ball 60 and Kyle Mills taking 1-7 from five overs were the only highlights for Williamson``s side, yet he remained upbeat.

The sides meet again at the same venue on Sunday and Williamson was adamant they could reverse their slump.