Former New Zealand cricketer John Bracewell heaped praise on left-handed opener Devon Conway, calling him an absolute magician in terms of adapting his game across all three formats of the sport.
Conway, who debuted for New Zealand after leaving South Africa, exploded in international cricket with a double hundred on Test debut against England in 2021, becoming only the seventh batter to be a member of the rare club and is now a mainstay for the Blackcaps across all formats.
Recently Conway played a vital role for Chennai Super Kings in winning IPL 2023, scoring six half-centuries while amassing 672 runs, being the third leading run-getter in the competition and forming a rock-solid opening pair with Ruturaj Gaikwad at the top.
"I think he's been an absolute magician in terms of his adaptability to all three formats, his skillset and his (growth). I like the way he's becoming a better cricketer all the time, so he's obviously caught the Kane Williamson bug of being a learner, not a guy that actually just sits there and relies on being talented."
"His game is just continuing to progress and that's something that Kane Williamson had introduced into the New Zealand side along with (former wicketkeeper) BJ Watling. I think that that's something that Devon Conway's picked up and moved forward with him taking it to another dimension," Bracewell was quoted as saying by SENZ Radio.
Bracewell also believes Conway will play a huge role for New Zealand during the Men's ODI World Cup, to be held in India in October-November this year, especially with Williamson likely to miss due to suffering an ACL injury in the opening match of IPL 2023 while playing for Gujarat Titans.
"I think he's one of a series of components, but he's certainly an important one. One, that he knows those conditions (and) two, that he's extremely adaptable in terms of now he's opening the batting in Twenty20."
"So he has that adaptability to be able to move up and down the order and fit in, so that makes him a good replacement for somebody like Kane, is that ability to adapt in and around your environment and the needs of the group. But equally, he's shown that he's a learner."
"He's gone over there, he's of African descent so they usually play on reasonably flat but bouncy wickets, but his ability to be able to adapt from surface to surface so quickly is something that I admire the most. It's not just finding a surface that he bullies out on, he actually adapts and actually succeeds on all surfaces," he concluded.