It was some longstanding advice from a former skipper that helped fire Colin Munro at Bay Oval last night.
He text ‘Bash Brother’ Brendon McCullum before the T20 spanking of the West Indies and was again told - “stand still, be aggressive and have some fun".
He did – and 53 balls and 104 runs later the leftie opener had thumped his way into the record books, becoming the first man ever to score three centuries in T20 internationals.
“I am enjoying my cricket at the moment,” a modest Munro told SunLive.
“We have been given the freedom to go out and express ourselves and the boys are doing it well.”
Munro blasted 10 sixes equaling Corey Anderson’s record for the most by a New Zealander in one innings. The century followed a 23-ball 66 in the rain curtailed second match at Bay Oval on Monday evening.
“There’s something about this ground,” says Munro. “Every time I come to Bay Oval I get a decent score.”
It was the venue for his first T20 ton, 101 off 54 balls against Bangladesh January last year. His second came against India in Rajkot – an unbeaten 109 off 58 last November.
“Every century is special. But definitely the first one for your country has to rank very special.”
The result of the game was academic with the woeful West Indies falling 120 short as they tried to chase down an improbable 243. They lost every completed match of the tour.
But even Martin Guptill’s 38 ball 63 was paled by Munro’s slashing innings last night.
“Guppy’s been doing it for years,” says Munro. “I am still learning off him. And we work well together. When I am going well, he rotates the strike very well for me and vice versa. So hopefully we are building an enduring batting relationship.”
Munro says it’s helped playing in the Caribbean Premier League. “I have played against most of these guys two years running – it went a long way knowing exactly where they would bowl to me, their weaknesses and strengths.”
“I have to take the good with the bad when I go out and play the way I do,” says the Blackcap opener. “Fortunate enough now it’s going well, but it’s not always going to go well so I just have to ride this wave as long as I can.”
To be honest, Munro is feeling confident at the moment.
“Without meaning to sound cocky, I am getting into a good position and hitting the ball well.”
Munro puts in a pitch for his colleagues.
“There has been a lot of talk about how bad the West Indies were, but no one has really given us credit for the way we have played as a team. We have raised the bar every single game and if we continue that form against Pakistan, then we will go a long way to winning that series.”
Munro is not so familiar with Pakistan.
“I haven’t faced many of their bowlers.” Although he played with leg spinner Shadab Khan and he’s played against quick Hana Ali.
“They have a very good bowling unit, a very good one day tea, and are very dangerous. We will get to wellington and make sure we have done our homework.
Pakistan opens its NZ tour with the first of five ODIs against the Blackcaps at the Basin on Saturday.
“You can see through this summer we have just got better and better,” says Munro.
“And while Kane Williamson and Mike Hesson are always demanding more of us, we will keep delivering.”