McCullum swansong not a distraction for Black Caps - Williamson


Kane Williamson says New Zealand will not be distracted by Brendon McCullum's exit from the one-day international stage when they face Australia in Hamilton with the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy up for grabs.

Black Caps skipper McCullum announced in December he will end his international career following Australia's tour of New Zealand.

Although two Tests follow the 50-over series, Monday's match at Seddon Park will represent the 260th and final ODI for a player boasting 6,036 runs in the format. Only two other New Zealanders have more - Stephen Fleming and Nathan Astle.

However, Williamson - McCullum's likely successor as captain in all formats - is confident the team will be able to fully focus on the task in hand.

"It's a big moment for Baz and all the guys that have played with him for so long but the focus is certainly on the game," said Williamson.

New Zealand were comfortable 159-run winners of the opening ODI, but Australia levelled the three-match series with a four-wicket triumph in Wellington.

Having been skittled for just 148 in Auckland, the tourists were grateful for a first-wicket stand of 122 between David Warner and the recalled Usman Khawaja on Saturday as they successfully chased down 282.

A mid-innings wobble, featuring Warner's departure for 98, threatened to cost Australia dear, but Mitchell Marsh and John Hastings shared 86 to see their side home with more than three overs to spare.

Williamson, New Zealand's top-scorer in Wellington with 60, said: "In a short series like this you have to stay positive. We're playing some good cricket.

"We weren't at our best [on Saturday] and Australia showed why they're one of the top teams in the world."

Australia handed a debut to Adam Zampa last time out and saw the leg-spinner account for Williamson on his way to figures of 2-57.

Zampa will be eager to impress again, with Australia's World Twenty20 squad set to be announced on Tuesday.

Seamer Joel Paris could also get the chance to stake a late claim for selection in the showpiece event after he was added to the touring squad as cover for Kane Richardson, who has returned home for further tests on the back injury that forced him to withdraw from the second ODI.