Is this to be the summer of Colin de Grandhomme?

The Auckland allrounder is making a decent fist of things so far.

Having thumped the second fastest test ton by a New Zealander, 71 balls, against the West Indies at the Basin Reserve last week, he followed up with 58 off 63 balls – having got his bearings with a solitary single off the first 16 deliveries – at Seddon Park today.

It showed a degree of common sense, getting his bearings before launching.


He came in with New Zealand at 189 for five, and at risk of squandering a good situation set up by Jeet Raval and captain Kane Williamson.

He knuckled down early and then went boom.

Offspinner Roston Chase copped the bulk of the damage, as de Grandhomme struck four sixes before being bowled late in the day.

But his stand with Mitchell Santner, 76 for the sixth wicket, pulled New Zealand back into reasonable shape.

''He's batting unbelievably well at the moment,'' Auckland team mate Raval said tonight.

''He soaked up pressure for 10 to 15 minutes to give himself a chance to get it and when he got opportunities to score he made the most of them.''

Among the more eye-catching aspects of de Grandhomme at the crease, no matter what form of cricket, he makes big hitting look easy.

He's a powerful man and has timing to his hitting. He has also benefitted from his chances in the last year since being recalled to the national team. There was a false start four seasons ago, when it seemed he had been put back in the box by the selectors.


''He's a better cricketer now, having played international cricket around the world,'' Raval added.

''He's very confident in his game and we are seeing it. Long may it continue.''

The West Indies would have imagined they were in with a big chance to slice through New Zealand's lower order batting today. They probably reckon they they've seen enough of the 31-year old.

''You know if you are slightly off he'll put away the bad balls, and sometimes the good balls,'' fast bowler Shannon Gabriel said.

''But he gives you a chance.''

And that's why people are starting to sit up when he comes in. De Grandhomme scores fast, and in a thrilling fashion. He is a point of difference about the New Zealand team.

His test average is 36.9 and he has a strike rate of 101.37.

How will we look back on de Grandhomme's full summer of cricket to come, remembering he's in the national team in all three formats?

He won't always come off, but when he does you'd want to be in the crowd.