Kane Williamson and co. have rigorous nine-months Test cricket until March 2017 © Getty Images
Kane Williamson and co. have rigorous nine-months Test cricket until March 2017 © Getty Images

New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson was not part of Yorkshire line up, who are playing against Surrey at The Oval. The official reason given was ‘mental fatigue’. Yorkshire coach Jason Gillespie confirmed about the same. Gillespie also said there was nothing wrong with his request as Williamson has long nine-months of non-stop international cricket. Gillespie also stressed on the fact that mental break was commonplace for many international players. Interestingly, New Zealand’s coach Mike Hesson is not fearful concern about Williamson’s ‘mental fatigue’ and knows Williamson is absolutely fit and looking forward to play future games. ALSO READ: Kane Williamson encourages ICC’s two-tier proposal for Test cricket

Williamson will farewell Yorkshire with T20 match on Friday. He will then join New Zealand team at their training camp in South Africa ahead of two-Test tour of Zimbabwe, that kicks off the international program that is lined up until March next year. Speaking about Williamson’s break from Yorkshire to ESPNcricinfo.com, he said, “It does highlight that scheduling is an issue. It’s been an incredibly busy period for everyone. Everybody gets affected with illnesses, injuries and the like.” New Zealand coach Mike Hesson said an eight-day training camp was essential for the players as they launch into a challenging nine months of international cricket. Speaking about the training camp, Hesson said, “All our players are at slightly different stages. Some have been playing, some haven’t played for a while and some are on limited loads so it’s quite an individual-based programme.”

Hesson also mentioned, 12-members of his squad had been or were still playing T20 and First Class cricket in England, “We’ve got guys in the Caribbean league, and we’ve got guys that have been in camps over here.” On speaking about Williamson’s ‘mental fatigue’,  Hesson brushed aside the concerns, “I’ve spoken to Kane many times, and he’s fine and very much looking forward to getting over there.” Williamson, who recently replaced Brendon McCullum as skipper, has captained New Zealand 36 times in limited-overs cricket, as for Test this would be the first time as a leader. The Black Caps skipper has had limited cricket since New Zealand’s World Twenty20 semi-final loss to England on March 30. ALSO READ: ICC Champions Trophy 2017: MS Dhoni, AB de Villiers, other captains extend support to tournament

He played just six Indian Premier League (IPL) matches for Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in May. With another break he started with his Yorkshire stint on June 15.  Last year Williamson became the sixth batsman to score 10 Test centuries before the age of 25 and picked up 2692 international runs across all formats – the third highest of any player in a calendar year. The upcoming Zimbabwe Test will mark the beginning of an intensive nine months for New Zealand. This will be followed by Tests against South Africa at Durban and Centurion in August, then to India for three-Tests and five-ODIs in September and October. They will be back home for two-Tests against Pakistan in November.

New Zealand will move to Australia for three Chappell-Hadlee ODIs in early December. New Zealand will also play lengthy tour against Bangladesh. New Zealand will play against South Africa the Black Caps host South Africa for three Tests, five ODIs and a T20 in February and March.

New Zealand Test squad: Kane Williamson (c), Trent Boult, Doug Bracewell, Mark Craig, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Luke Ronchi, Jeet Raval, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling.