Colin Munro
Colin Munro (AFP Photo)

Colin Munro has made a name for himself through his exploits in limited-overs cricket. More recently, he finished as the leading run-getter in the Caribbean Premier League for his title-winning team Trinbago Knight Riders.

It’s another fact that the big-hitting left-hander averages 51.58 in first-class cricket but for New Zealand, he hasn’t been able to cement a place in Tests. While he has 40 ODIs and 45 T20Is to his name, his sole Test appearance came in January 2013, against South Africa where he registered a first-ball duck in debut innings and scored 15 in the second.

With his efforts in red-ball cricket not yielding the desired results, the 31-year-old has given up the format to focus on limited-overs and seal a place for the ICC World Cup 2019 in England.

“To give up first-class cricket was a tough decision and I have been thinking about it for the last couple of years,” Munro was quoted as saying by The Hindu on Sunday. “It wasn’t easy to give up 10 years of first-class cricket and about 50 matches, but I wasn’t getting the rewards I wanted.”

Munro thinks the World Cup will be an evenly contested tournament and expects New Zealand to do well. “I think New Zealand would play well in the conditions of England, where we have had successes in the past. England, West Indies and India too have good chances in what I think will be a hotly contested World Cup, with all teams playing one another once,” he said.

For him, Afghanistan are the one to watch out for. At the recently concluded Asia Cup in the UAE, Afghanistan got the better of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and tied a match against world no. 1 India to prove how far they have come in international cricket.

Munro, who is in Sharjah for the Afghanistan Premier League (APL), feels he T20 tournament will benefit Afghan cricketers. “They (Afghanistan) have match-winners with both bat and ball, and they have shown what they could do at the recent Asia Cup. I feel APL would help their cricketers greatly. Rubbing shoulders with some of the best cricketers in the world will be beneficial for them,” he added.