Ross Taylor needs to pick up his run rate

11:11 am on 2 March 2015

If New Zealand is to win the Cricket World Cup one thing needs to start happening pretty soon - Ross Taylor has to score runs again.

New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor.

New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Taylor has had a dreadful start to the cup with scores of 14, 9, 5 not out and 1. And in that order.

Surely, the only way is up.

Prior to the cup he and Kane Williamson represented a bulwark against any early loss of our openers.

Williamson, only 24, and surely on track to be New Zealand's greatest batsman, has remained granite-like but Taylor, 30, our standout batsmen in recent years, looks distinctly ill at ease.

It is a startling turnaround from Taylor's run into the cup.

In the four games ahead of the opening match in Christchurch he scored 96, 11, 59 not out and 102 not out.

A year ago he scored 55, 57, 112 not out, 102 and 105 not out in a golden run against India.

That it feels a lot longer than a year ago indicates things are not well.

Taylor's quick departure in Saturday's incredible match against Australia exposed the frailties of New Zealand's batting line-up; Grant Elliott becomes very exposed at number 5 if Taylor and Williamson do not shield him.

Corey Anderson was also at sea facing Mitchell Starc and was granted a generous stay of execution by Australian captain Michael Clarke's rather odd decision to give the devastating quick a break.

Ross Taylor


While Black Caps coach Mike Hesson has indicated his side will change for the last two pool matches, against plucky Afghanistan and Bangladesh, he may be wise to ensure Taylor gets a chance to spend plenty of more time at the crease.

If Taylor can find the middle of his bat again and return to his brutal, devastating best, then New Zealand's chances of lifting the cup look a whole lot rosier.

Get the new RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs

We have regular online commentary of local and international sport.