Taylor bats away retirement talk ahead of 100th Test

Published February 19, 2020
Taylor became New Zealand’s leading run-scorer in Tests when he surpassed Stephen Fleming’s career tally of 7,172. — AFP/File
Taylor became New Zealand’s leading run-scorer in Tests when he surpassed Stephen Fleming’s career tally of 7,172. — AFP/File

WELLINGTON: New Zealand’s Ross Taylor will celebrate his 100th Test in the series opener against India this week and the veteran batsman says he has no intention of winding down his international career as he nears his 36th birthday.

Taylor became New Zealand’s leading run-scorer in Tests when he surpassed Stephen Fleming’s career tally of 7,172 against Australia in Sydney last month.

In front of home fans in Wellington on Friday, he will become the nation’s fourth cricketer to play 100 Tests after Fleming, Daniel Vettori and Brendon McCullum. He will also become the first cricketer to reach the milestone in all three major formats.

Far from seeing the finish line for his career, Taylor said he had been urged to reset his goals in a congratulatory call from former New Zealand Test opener and coach John Wright.

“He said it was a nice time to relax, but at the same time nice to rejig those goals,” Taylor said in comments published by New Zealand’s Stuff media on Tuesday.

“Give yourself something to chase ... Goals aren’t everything but they’re a nice reminder when your mind is going in different directions, to bring you back on track and give you a focus.”

Taylor said he was keen to be in the frame for New Zealand’s bid for a maiden T20 World Cup title when the men’s tournament kicks off in Australia in October.

He would also not rule out the next ODI World Cup in India in 2023, having played in the heart-breaking defeat to hosts England in last year’s title-decider.

“First and foremost I want to get to next year — the Twenty20 World Cup and then the home summer — and then I’ll have a good idea on how I’m placed at the end of next summer.

“Whether there is still a drive, whether I’m good enough, whether I’m fit enough, and whether I deserve my spot in the side. If I can tick all those, then definitely 2023 is an option.”

It will be a party atmosphere for Taylor at the Basin Reserve on Friday, with New Zealand Cricket offering dozens of free tickets for his extended family on the weekend of his sister’s wedding.

“You always want to do well, and first and foremost the game is more important,” he said. “At the same time you can put extra pressure on yourself.

“You’ve just got to go out and enjoy it and take it as another game. Hopefully I can contribute in any way I can.”

Published in Dawn, February 19th, 2020

Opinion

Discipline and punish

Discipline and punish

The larger issue is that many within the police and the state view the role of the police as not one of service but of control.
The truly worrying malware
Updated 27 Jul 2021

The truly worrying malware

It’s excessive to hope that governments will surrender even when caught with their hands on the till.
Appointing VCs
27 Jul 2021

Appointing VCs

For VCs of yore, it was more than a job assignment.
Giving peace a chance
Updated 26 Jul 2021

Giving peace a chance

So long as Afghan government forces do not collapse in the face of the Taliban’s military assaults, diplomacy will have a chance.

Editorial

AJK’s ugly elections
Updated 27 Jul 2021

AJK’s ugly elections

All party leaders focused on insulting their rivals instead of talking about issues concerning the AJK electorate.
27 Jul 2021

Refugee concerns

AS Afghanistan slips back into chaos with a rapid Taliban advance, the possibility of refugees spilling over into...
27 Jul 2021

ECP vacancies

FEARS of yet another deadlock between the PTI government and the opposition on the selection of successors for...
26 Jul 2021

Senior citizens’ law

FOR all the cultural emphasis on respect and consideration for our elders, the state itself extends little by way of...
26 Jul 2021

Grim Covid realities

YET another grim milestone was reached last week when we became the 30th country in the world to mark a million...
Islamophobia envoy
Updated 26 Jul 2021

Islamophobia envoy

By calling for the appointment of a special envoy to counter Islamophobia, US lawmaker Ilhan Omar has raised a pertinent issue.