What a difference a fortnight makes.

On the night of December 26 we were pondering New Zealand’s chances of getting back into their ODI series against the West Indies, having lost a tight opening contest at Eden Park, amid talk of an evenness between the teams.

Just how much the assault by Corey Anderson and Jesse Ryder ‘ in the shortened contest at Queenstown on New Year’s Day took out of the tourists, only they know.

But the odds strongly favour New Zealand going on to win the decider today and clinching a 3-1 series, to follow an emphatic 2-0 test rubber win.

If New Zealand stretch their necks they’ll see India preparing to board a plane heading this way. It’s a good time to be in prime, and importantly, winning form.

But in Kane Williamson’s mind what matters most is today and another chance for success.

New Zealand had what coach Mike Hesson called “a bad week” in Bangladesh, when they were dusted 3-0 in October/November. But before that, there were ODI series wins in South Africa and England last year, no mean achievement.

The West Indies, shorn of several players through injury, are battling. Time, then, for New Zealand to nail the coffin shut.

“It’s very much [about] this game and we know how important it is for our team to keep improving and building on each performance, so this team is moving in the right direction,” Williamson said yesterday. “There’s a series win on the line and if we can keep playing the cricket we want to at the level we want to play it, then ultimately wins will come…”


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