In my mind, I wanted to finish on my own terms: Taylor on retirement

Auckland, Jan 17 (IANS) New Zealand batter Ross Taylor said on Monday that he had the idea in his mind to finish his international career on his own terms. He added that the messages received ever since announcing his international cricket after the 2022 home summer have been ‘unbelievable’.

Taylor’s Test career came to a close after 15 years and 112 Tests at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch against Bangladesh. Taylor took the final wicket of Ebadot Hossain to seal victory for the Blackcaps at Hagley Oval in Christchurch and script a fantastic finish of his career in the longest format of the game.

“I think once the season is over, and I’m not playing for New Zealand anymore it might sink in a bit more. This has been a long time coming, something I had thought about for a while. In my mind, I wanted to finish on my own terms, but I also didn’t really want to make a fuss out of it,” said Taylor on the SENZ Mornings show.

Talking about the messages he has been getting on the final leg of his international career, Taylor was astounded by the flow of congratulations from all around the world.

“You play this game of cricket, but I suppose you touch a lot more people than you think. I love playing for my country, and I try to do my job to the best of my ability, but some of the messages I have received have been unbelievable.”

“To see what people have to say about you in a positive light, and how you’ve inspired different people is just something you don’t really understand when you’re playing and in the heat of battle.”

With 7,683 runs coming at an average of 44.66, including 19 centuries and 35 half-centuries, Taylor has retired as New Zealand’s leading run-getter in Tests. The right-handed batter, who made his debut in South Africa in 2007, recalled how his maiden Test tour set the foundation for him to do well.

“I was hit in the shoulder first ball from Makhaya Ntini and was given a few verbals from behind the wicket. I think it took me 15-18 balls to get off the mark, but I was just happy not to get a golden duck. Facing those bowlers in those conditions, it didn’t get much tougher than that at the time.”

“It was a great series for me. Not necessarily because I scored any runs, because I didn’t, but it told me where I was as a cricketer, and what I needed to do in different areas to improve my game.”

The 37-year-old signed off by paying his respects to former Blackcaps batter Martin Crowe, who had a big influence on his game. “He had a lot to do with my development as a cricketer, taught me a lot of things about batting.”

“From a technical point of view, he taught me how to start an innings, getting forward and eliminating ways of getting out. If you can eliminate being bowled and LBW, then you’re getting over half the dismissals away and working cricket into your favour.”

Taylor will now play the white-ball matches against Australia before signing off from international cricket with ODIs against the Netherlands at home in April.

–IANS

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