The New Zealand BLACKCAPS have played a total of 10 Cricket World Cups and, although they have reached the semi-finals on an impressive six occasions, they are yet to clinch cricket’s ultimate prize.
Over the years, New Zealand has produced a raft of cricket players who have achieved international acclaim - but soon it will be time for the class of 2015 to show the rest of the world just what they are made of.
BLACKCAPS batsman Martin Guptill has enjoyed a prolific rise to New Zealand cricket stardom after his heroic top-order batting displays against some of the world’s best teams.
Hailing from Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, Guptill started forging his cricket career at the tender age of five and has continued to grow in the game ever since.
After shining for the Auckland Aces in New Zealand domestic cricket, Guptill was called into the BLACKCAPS. In 2009 the rising star made his ODI debut against the West Indies at Auckland’s Eden Park, his self-confessed favourite cricket ground and Cricket World Cup semi-final venue.
He quickly landed himself a spot in the sporting record books by becoming the first New Zealander to score a century on his ODI debut.
And the accolades keep coming. During the BLACKCAPS tour of England in 2013, Guptill equalled a record set by West Indies superstar Viv Richards for the most runs scored in an ODI by an international batsman on English soil.
What is your fondest memory from previous cricket World Cups?
My fondest would have to be the BLACKCAPS quarter-final victory against South Africa in the last Cricket World Cup. We didn’t bat particularly well, but we came out and defended the low total well and played really well as a team on the field.
What will it mean to the BLACKCAPS to play a Cricket World Cup in New Zealand?
It will mean a lot to for the BLACKCAPS to play a Cricket World Cup in New Zealand. It’s a pretty unique experience to play in a world tournament in your home nation. The guys are really looking forward to playing on our home grounds, in front of our home crowds. It’s going to be an amazing experience.
Where is your favourite place to play cricket in New Zealand, and why?
My favourite place to play cricket in New Zealand is definitely Eden Park. It’s my home ground, I love playing in front of my friends and family and there is always a fantastic atmosphere created.
What is your favourite New Zealand holiday destination - and what makes it so special?
My favourite holiday destination in New Zealand is Queenstown. It’s such a lovely destination to visit all year round - whether it’s summer or winter, there is always something to do there - and the scenery is amazing.
Sachin Tendulkar did the SkyWalk in NZ - what is the most extreme activity you have done in New Zealand?
I haven’t done too much to be honest, but I would probably have to say the Shotover Jet in Queenstown. That was a really fun experience and I’d love to do it again.