The plain truth is that Twenty20 is not only profitable for the players but it is also popular with folk who like to be entertained on a short-term basis. CHANGE the diet.
That's my answer to the current ills of the Black Caps when it comes to test cricket.
And I am not talking about what they eat.
To me, it's all about the preparation they have to go into in what should be five days of hard graft.
The huge amount of Twenty20 cricket being played these days might be good news for the bank balances of our top players but it's playing havoc with their skill levels in the longest version of the game.
Twenty20 is pretty much smash and bash. To succeed batsmen have to be prepared to take risks from the word go. Ticking the scoreboard over with ones and twos just doesn't cut the mustard. Boundaries are the name of the game and if you have to break all the rules of traditional cricket, like not playing across the line, then so be it.
In Twenty20, bowlers are given scant respect. Seldom is the ball played on its merits and maintaining a decent line and length is virtually a sin. Any bowler who restricts the runs per over to less than double figures is assured of hero status from his teammates and supporters.
Test cricket is a very different kettle of fish. To use racing parlance, the emphasis there is on outstaying the opposition and that means minimising the risk factors, particularly in the batting department where time at the crease can be every bit as important as runs scored. Discipline is crucial, application, too.
Now I know many readers will be quick to point out that New Zealand is not the only international side which has to cope with the plethora of limited overs games being played these days, and if others can manage it why can't our boys.
It's a fair question which I am sure will have the experts in psychology offering up all sorts of analytical answers but it should not be allowed to detract from what the results show: the Black Caps seem to find the transition more difficult to handle than most, if not all, of the countries they meet on a regular basis.
Which in turn begs another question, what are those responsible for the administration of the game here going to do about it?
I fear the answer to that is nowhere near as difficult. In a word: nothing.
The plain truth is that Twenty20 is not only profitable for the players but it is also popular with folk who like to be entertained on a short-term basis. And there are many more of them than the so-called purists who love the more methodical approach required in the test arena. That must play a big part in the minds of those responsible for paying the bills, doesn't it?
Unfortunately, however, without the administrators being willing to at least substantially reduce the amount of Twenty20 cricket being played - here and overseas - the chances of the Black Caps leap-frogging their way up the test rankings seem somewhat forlorn. Yes, they will probably secure the odd upset victory or two but consistent success is unlikely, hugely so.
Sad but true.