New Zealand cricket fans should rejoice in the dominance of the national men's side.

Regardless of the West Indies and Pakistan's relative merits, the incumbents have beaten everyone put in front of them this summer.

They have added another chapter to what has become an outstanding era. Expectations on the current team are higher than almost all periods outside the Sir Richard Hadlee-inspired 1980s.

The concern is that the margins of victory have generated apathy to a point that, now the Pakistan one-day international series is a 3-0 dead rubber, the focus will turn to England's arrival next month. Only then - and to a certain extent through the T20 tri-series with England and Australia - will we get a true gauge of New Zealand's ability.


This season's success begs the question whether the pressure on the Black Caps to win is within touching distance of the All Blacks?

That school-of-thought needs a few more years to percolate. More regular victories, particularly in tests home and away against Australia, India, South Africa and England would be required.

However, you would not need to look far into the annals to find fans relieved when New Zealand teams simply competed with dignity.

The fourth one-day international of New Zealand's five-match series against Pakistan – aka the Champions Trophy winners - on Tuesday night has the hosts on the precipice of a record 11-match winning streak across all formats.

The victory in Dunedin was their 10th in succession, equaling the best sequence in the side's history. The first was solely made up of ODIs, spanning the final win over Pakistan in January 2015 to the World Cup semi-final victory over South Africa; the second was across all formats from the 2016 Boxing Day ODI win over Bangladesh until they secured the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy against Australia in February.

The fact each of those tenures have come within the last three years is no coincidence.

History will reflect favourably on the Mike Hesson-coaching era.

It has showcased some of the finest players this country has produced, such as Trent Boult, Martin Guptill (in white ball matches), Brendon McCullum, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson. Even Daniel Vettori kept the retirement door ajar so he could roll the arm over with the new generation leading to the 2015 World Cup.

Those names will inevitably feature in the hypothetical but addictive "Best New Zealand XI" debate in years to come.

Just as important as the stars is the development of the next generation. No one has filled the vacuum left by Vettori and McCullum yet, but progress is underway.

Guiding New Zealand to their first World Cup final in 2015 is the main gong on this era's mantelpiece, alongside an unprecedented seven successive undefeated test series (2013-2015) and a record-equalling 13 undefeated tests at home (2012-2016).*

Since Hesson took charge in August 2012, New Zealand have played 51 tests, won 20, lost 19 and drawn 12. By generic comparison, the 1980s had 59 tests of which 17 were won, 15 lost and 27 drawn.

In completed ODIs, Hesson has overseen 105 for 61 wins, 43 losses and a tie; the 1980s results were 122 played, 56 won and 66 lost.

The maths reflects well on the current era, and those strong performances have been coupled with a culture of humility. Nothing appears taken for granted. There is no sense that entitlement has seeped in with success.

New Zealanders can be proud of a cricket team that is marketable to the world.

*John Wright was coach for the first match, against South Africa at Wellington in 2012.