Kyle Jamieson believes New Zealand’s team culture has enabled him and Devon Conway to thrive as they put their side in control of the ICC World Test Championship Final.
India started day three on 146/3 but Jamieson completed his fifth five-wicket haul in just eight Tests as the Black Caps restricted Virat Kohli’s team to 217 all out from 92.1 overs.
Following the 26-year-old’s superb 5/31, New Zealand piled more pressure on India with a gritty 70-run opening partnership between Conway (54) and Tom Latham (30) in Southampton.
While Conway lost his wicket shortly after reaching his half-century, and just before play was stopped for bad light, the Black Caps finished the day in a commanding position on 101/2.
And Jamieson, who only made his Test debut against India in February 2020, credited his experienced teammates with providing him and Conway the platform to succeed.
“I think the team culture and the environment that has been created over a long period of time is certainly one of the strings of this team and allows guys [to perform],” he said.
“I have certainly been comfortable coming into this group and just being able to go about your business and I think having world class guys around you allows you to just settle in your role.
“I can’t necessarily speak for Devon and how he feels but certainly for me it’s been an absolute pleasure coming into this group and just being able to go about my business.
“I’ve been able to learn off these guys and I guess ride the coattails of them a little bit. The pressure they build and the runs they score, I can’t speak highly enough of the environment.
“The culture the guys have built over a period of time has certainly made my transition into international cricket pretty easy. It was good [the opening partnership].
“It was certainly a tricky period and I think the way Tom and Devon went about their business at the start and set the platform for us, and Kane coming in and doing Kane things as well.
“It’s important and we spoke about today being important in terms of putting the ball in the right areas and getting wickets and then off the back of that we had to start well with the bat.
“We were able to do that and whatever unfolds in terms of the weather, bad light or whatever, we can’t control but we can control how we choose to operate and tackle each moment.”
Kohli started the day on 44 but was unable to add to his overnight score as Jamieson struck in the third full over before also taking the wickets of Ishant Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah.
Ajinkya Rahane top scored with 49 but succumbed to Neil Wagner's short-ball trap before Conway and Latham set about building New Zealand’s innings diligently.
Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin eventually accounted for Latham’s wicket while Conway fell to Sharma just two balls before the players were taken off for bad light at the Hampshire Bowl.
And Shubman Gill hopes Conway’s wicket could prove the turning point for India if they can strike early on day four with Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor at the crease.
“It was a crucial wicket for us and I feel if we’d have been able to have bowled a couple more overs to Ross Taylor, the new batsmen, we might have gotten a couple of more,” he said.
“When the play starts tomorrow we will have a slight edge on them as both are relatively new on the crease. I think in the fourth innings the spinners will play a crucial role.
“Hopefully in this innings as well as the game goes on there will be some kind of help for the spinners. He [Kyle Jamieson] was bowling well, the first spell he was bowling well.
“He didn’t get many wickets in the first spell but he got his reward today and I feel our bowlers also bowled really well and there were a couple of half chances which didn’t go our way.
“Hopefully tomorrow is a new day and it will bring some luck to our bowlers. I think both of the teams will try to have a result out of this match. If the conditions don’t go our way then there isn’t much that we can do.”