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Ross Taylor: I've got to respect the selectors' decision

New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor walks off disappointed after going out to South African bowler JP Duminy, during the Semi-Final match between New Zealand and South Africa. Photo / Brett Phibbs.
New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor walks off disappointed after going out to South African bowler JP Duminy, during the Semi-Final match between New Zealand and South Africa. Photo / Brett Phibbs.

Ross Taylor opened up for the first time yesterday since his axing from the New Zealand T20 team, and his failure to get a 'no objection certificate' to play in Australia's Big Bash League.

He has rejoined the Black Caps test side for the opening match against Bangladesh which starts tomorrow in Wellington.

Taylor said the operation to remove the pterygium on his left eye had been successful. He was ready to face the red ball again at the Basin Reserve where he will attempt to equal the feat of his late mentor Martin Crowe in making 17 test centuries, the most by a New Zealander.

"I was disappointed to be left out [of the T20 side], because I love playing all three formats for my country," Taylor said.

"But I've got to respect the selectors' decision. To answer with two 80s [for the Central Stags in the Super Smash] was nice and it's great being back at one of my favourite grounds; I missed the test against Australia here last year [with a side strain].

"I'm getting more confident with [the eye] and I enjoyed having a hit out for CD. My peripheral vision feels better. I went to my manager's house and asked if she'd bought a new fridge. She said they'd had the same one for the last four or five years. I'm not sure if that was a good or a bad thing."

As Taylor recovered he suffered a further setback. His application to play for the Melbourne Renegades against the Melbourne Stars on New Year's Day in the BBL was rejected by New Zealand Cricket.

"Hess [Black Caps coach Mike Hesson] was all for me going, but David [chief executive David White] had other reasons [to consider], due to the play-travel rule with such a big summer ahead.

"It is what it is. It would have been nice to play in front of 70,000 for the Melbourne derby, but New Zealand Cricket have their protocols. I've got to respect that."

He has spent the interim trying to strengthen torso muscles which suffered a mild strain swatting balls towards what he described as "35-40m" Pukekura Park boundaries.

Crowe scored his 17th ton in the 120th of 131 test innings. Taylor scored his 16th in his 142nd innings during the final test against Pakistan at Hamilton in November.

"People in the supermarket mention it to you, and Hogan [Crowe] gave me a list of records he wanted me to break. I think it's more of a motivation when things meander along in the background sometimes.

"At the moment I'm happy where my game's at. If a hundred comes, it comes. I've got to try to be as consistent as possible."

Despite his present difficulties, the 32-year-old said he wanted to "give a bit back to the youngsters" in the team and to "help Kane [captain Kane Williamson] out along the way".

"I know what it felt like when the older guys started to retire at the beginning of my career, hopefully I can hang around."

After the home summer Taylor said his immediate ambition were to put his name back in the Indian Premier League auction and to play a second T20 season with Sussex.

"But I'll need to get an NOC first," he quipped.

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