Of late, it has clearly been the latter.
The allrounder has been New Zealand cricket’s gift that keeps on giving, with the likes of James Neesham, Doug Bracewell and Scott Kuggeleijn all proving their worth at different stages throughout the recent series against Sri Lanka.
But just how far could we take this?
What if the Black Caps did away with the traditional and selected an international ODI side not just featuring the odd all-rounder, but rather a team built around them?
One that, top-to-bottom, had better than good ability with both bat and ball.
Would they be competitive? Would there be an advantage to batting 10 deep and having everyone in the side capable of rolling the arm over?
These are questions unlikely to ever be answered, but were the New Zealand selectors bold enough, here’s what that side could look like:
Colin Munro – Opening batsman able to bowl some quality right-arm medium-pace.
George Worker – An imposing top-order batsman and a handy left-arm spin, if required.
Kane Williamson (c) – Even a hypothetical New Zealand side has to have captain Kane at three. Great in the field and bowls an underrated right-arm off-break.
Corey Anderson – When healthy, Anderson is one of world cricket’s best all-round talents.
Anton Devcich – Always good to have a left hand power hitter in the middle order – better still when they also bowl some handy orthodox spin.
Colin de Grandhomme – Powerful striker of the ball in the middle order and has continuously made timely breakthroughs with the ball for New Zealand in all forms.
Jimmy Neesham – The talk of the town. Everyone knew Neesham could bat, but his pace with the ball has perhaps been the most impressive aspect of this game this summer.
Grant Elliott – Disclaimer: This is a nostalgic pick more than anything else. But drag the ‘Hairy Javelin’ out of retirement for one more dance. The hero of the last World Cup, Elliott is the prototypical modern day all-rounder.
Doug Bracewell – Forced his way back into the side against Sri Lanka and proved his worth with some big hitting at the death.
Mitch Santner – Back from a lengthy injury and didn’t look to miss a beat. One of the game’s best all-rounders a season or two ago.
Scott Kuggeleijn – What a debut. An express speed bowler not afraid to throw the bat at the ball. His unusual batting stance seemed to cause problems for the Sri Lankan attack.