New Zealand's captain Kane Williamson (C) holds the winner's Mace as New Zealand players celebrate victory on the final day of the ICC World Test Championship Final. Photo: Glyn Kirk/AFP
New Zealand's captain Kane Williamson (C) holds the winner's Mace as New Zealand players celebrate victory on the final day of the ICC World Test Championship Final. Photo: Glyn Kirk/AFP

The magic number 45 in Black Caps’ Test fortune

By Mark Keohane Time of article published Jun 26, 2021

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CAPE TOWN - New Zealand’s world champion Test cricketers will tell you that cricket is a numbers game and if you look beyond the obvious of their inaugural once-off Test final victory against India in Southampton, England earlier this week, not only is it a numbers game but a heavenly one as well.

The number 45 is an angel number and it is said to represent awareness as much as being a lucky number. It is a number that comes straight from the heavens, as the Black Caps’ triumph against India was all about the number 45.

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New Zealand’s No 4 batsman Ross Taylor hit the fifth ball of the 45th over for the match-winning four on the fifth actual day of play in the rain-interrupted Test.

Now rewind to January 2, 2013 when the Proteas dismissed New Zealand for 45 in their first innings at Newlands, Cape Town.

Only one of the New Zealand batsmen on that day scored double figures, which was Kane Williamson, who would captain the Black Caps to the World Championship title eight years later. Williamson scored 13, which adds up to four and the best South African bowler was Vernon Philander with his five wickets.

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The 45 all out in Cape Town was when the Black Caps, by their own admission, had hit ‘ground zero’ and the captain on the day, Brendon McCullum, said it was the score and innings that New Zealand would use as the anchor of where they never wanted to find themselves again.

There could be no escaping the No 45 when the Black Caps spoke about their ambition to become a competitive Test team and the best in the world. To move forward they would have to confront that innings of 45.

McCullum lauded Williamson’s leadership of the Black Caps and said it was poignant that Williamson was playing in Cape Town in 2013 and that he could draw on the experience of an emotion that he knew he didn’t want to experience again in his career.

“The team is a real image of the skipper,” McCullum told the New Zealand media. “The culture of that side is so much of what is New Zealand. We are humble, hard-working and innovative when we need to be and represent our country with great pride, and that is what those guys do. This New Zealand cricket team is the perfect fabric of what we want.”

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McCullum acknowledged that the day of reckoning came in Cape Town in the 45 all out batting experience and that it forced the players and everyone involved with the national team to take a hard and honest look at themselves and the game at the highest level.

“Everyone reflects back to 2013 as a ground zero moment for us; it was an important moment but you’ve got to go back generations. For generations, we’ve been trying different formulas and different fabrics and we’ve always been searching and I think in 2013, our search was pretty brutal because of being bowled out for 45,” said McCullum.

Now if you are among those who find meaning, symbolism and significance in numbers, as I do, unpack the spiritual association with the number 45.

Is 45 an angel number?

Yes, it is. Numerolognation.com dedicates a page to the numbers 4 and 5 that appear in sequence, and it is numbers that have a strong vibration or energy and these numbers steer individuals in the right direction or assures them that they are on the right path.

The number 45 is also a symbol of perseverance and bravery, despite many setbacks in life, and a reminder of the hard work done to achieve one’s goal. It is also a reminder not to feel discouraged and to stick to the plans and spend more time around people with positive energy as they remind you that you should never give up.

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The number 45 speaks so emphatically to the Black Caps players and what they have achieved in the last eight years and how they went from their lowest moment in modern Test cricket to their finest in beating India by eight wickets.

The number 45, when brutally presented, as it was at Newlands in that first innings in 2013, tells you that you are doing things wrong and that it is time to own the situation and conquer the fears that are forcing these actions to repeat themselves.

It talks to the courage needed to solve problems and the hard work required to turn the situation around and it demands honesty of oneself. It is a number that encourages you to invoke positive and strong thoughts to help eliminate fears, move ahead and achieve.

It is as if the number 45 was written in the stars for New Zealand’s cricketers and in Southampton, on that final day, Taylor, batting at No 4 for the Black Caps, hit the winning runs (a four) with the fifth ball of the 45th over.

And if you doubt the power of numbers, the most potent number is said to be 11.

Consider this, New Zealand played 11 Tests to get to the final and won seven and lost four of them, and Taylor scored 47 not out at a strike rate of 47. Take four and add seven and you get 11.

@mark_keohane

IOL Sport

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