22 Nov 2012

Senior players need to lead from the front

11:47 am on 22 November 2012

Batting against spin bowlers remains the major concern for the New Zealand cricket team after its fifth straight test defeat - but a former coach says it's the senior players who need to stand up and perform.

Following on from series losses in the West Indies and India, the Black Caps were beaten by 10 wickets by Sri Lanka in the first Test in Galle.

Almost half of their wickets in those five tests have fallen to spin bowlers, while the Black Caps have manage to score more than 300 in just two of their innings.

Steve Rixon, who now assists the Australian team, says with players worried about their place in the side it can lead to an unhealthy team atmosphere.

The second test starts in Colombo on Sunday.