Former New Zealand right-arm pace bowler Hamish Bennett believes the high standard set by the Black Caps on the cricket field of late was the reason for the nation feeling disappointed with their performance in the ongoing Test series against England.
England have taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-Test series under Ben Stokes and look set to take the upper hand in the third Test as well with Jonny Bairstow slamming an unbeaten century on Day 2 at Leeds on Friday.
New Zealand's recent success has come in the 2019 50-over World Cup, where they lost to England in the final at Lord's after the match was tied. The Kane Williamson-led side then won the World Test Championship final against India last year and went on to secure a place in the final of the ICC T20 World Cup in the UAE late last year, losing to Australia.
Bennett added that while the side is looking far from its best in the Test series against England, he felt the public's response points to an increasing engagement with the game, which is a good thing for the sport in the country.
"I think now, we've actually got such a high standard of the Blackcaps side after, you know, they've done really well (since) 2019, making all of the three finals of the ICC events," Bennett said on SENZ's The Saturday Session.
"So, I think with this series, you know obviously disappointingly going into the Headingly Test 2-0 down, it's just our high standards that we've got now. That's why we're so disappointed," said the 35-year-old Bennett, who has played 19 ODIs and 11 T20Is besides being part of a Test.
"I think it's a great thing that we're so (disappointed)... I think the public's dirty that we're losing and there's some good talking points as well. I think it just shows how much cricket's grown in this country, so I think it's actually a really good thing when you're looking and... take a step back and look at it, it's actually a really good thing that we're creating so much conversation about it in June. Whereas normally cricket in June, in New Zealand, is... well no one really bothers."