Even New Zealand's best batsmen, Crowe, Reid, Turner and Sutcliffe didn't manage to hold the team together often enough for New Zealand to regularly score big scores.
Before the year 2000 New Zealand had only managed to pass 400 on 52 occasions. (roughly 10% of innings). From 2000 until the end of 2012, they managed to pass 400 on 32 occasions (roughy 17% of innings). Since then, under Brendon McCullum, they have managed to pass 400 on 12 occasions in 32 innings (37.5%).
The consistency has been remarkable.
Under McCullum New Zealand have scored under 200 in 27% of innings. The next best was Fleming with 29.3%. Under every other captain who had the team for at least 5 matches, New Zealand scored less than 200 on at least one third of their innings.
This graphic displays the difference quite well:
Under McCullum, New Zealand have scored over 400 more often than they scored over 300 with most captains.
The team's ability to score 400 regularly is actually impressive when compared globally also.
I decided to look at how often a team scored 400, divided by the number of times they were bowled out. This eliminates situations where the match situation makes scoring 400 unrealistic, for example where a team scores 90/3 to win a match or declares for 385/7 to set up a win.
Here's the table:
|Captain||400's||All Outs||400s per AO|
|N Kapil Dev||15||36||0.417|
Some other New Zealand names on the list are Fleming, 0.298; Vettori 0.214 and Howarth 0.212.
It is still very early days, but this New Zealand team under Brendon McCullum are starting to show some real promise.