Williamson Prioritizes T20 League but Stays Committed to New Zealand

Kane Williamson New Zealand cricket

Kane Williamson will miss several internationals in January to play in South Africa’s T20 league but remains dedicated to New Zealand cricket for as long as possible, the star batsman announced on Thursday.

Following New Zealand’s early exit from the T20 World Cup, Williamson revealed on Wednesday that he had relinquished the white-ball captaincy and would forgo a national contract for the 2024/25 season.

Speaking to reporters at Auckland airport, the 33-year-old expressed his desire to manage his schedule more effectively.

“I want to play as long as I can. I love playing for New Zealand and have really enjoyed my captaincy,” Williamson said. “But I’m excited about the new leadership and eager to be part of that journey.

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“As for my career timeline, it’s hard to define. I aim to stay fit, keep improving, and play as long as I can.”

New Zealand’s early T20 World Cup exit came after making the semi-finals in the last three editions and the final in 2021.

Trent Boult has announced he won’t participate in the 2026 tournaments in Sri Lanka and India, and Lockie Ferguson has also declined a New Zealand contract. With many senior players over 30, New Zealand faces a challenging rebuilding phase ahead of the next World Cup.

However, Williamson remains optimistic about the team’s future.

“We need to keep building towards upcoming events, and the team is in a healthy place,” he noted. “There are talented young players emerging and experienced ones still contributing.”

Williamson joins the trend of elite players choosing T20 franchise cricket over international matches due to a packed schedule.

He emphasized that cricket boards need to monitor this trend, as each player’s priorities differ. Discussing his own future, he stated, “I’m taking it one year at a time, balancing my career and family is crucial.”

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