Disappointed? Sure, Ajaz Patel wouldn't be human if he wasn't but he's been around the cricket block long enough to know that with high expectations an element of disenchantment is always a given.
However, missing out on the Black Caps' line up for the Bangladesh test series, which started yesterday, doesn't mean Patel is in danger of losing his resolve any time soon.
"I enjoy playing cricket so I suppose, at the end of the day, it's about playing as much as you can and it's a great privilege to play with the Stags," says the 30-year-old orthodox left-arm spinner who will turn out for his Central Districts side who host the Otago Volts at McLean Park, Napier, in round six of the Plunket Shield match from 10.30am today.
"You know, I enjoy my time here just as much as I enjoyed it over there so I just have to continue to keep improving my game and, I suppose, just keep putting those figures out," he says after Black Caps coach Gary Stead and convenor of selectors Gavin Larsen opted for ICC World Cup contender Todd Astle, of the Canterbury Kings.
Patel's frustration stems from missing out on turning out for his country as many times as he possibly can for higher honours as a long-term goal since he was a youngster.
"It is disappointing for myself but at the same time I've had good communication with the New Zealand coaches around the reasoning behind picking Todd and progressing with him through the series so I'm just going to put my head down and continue working hard on my game and put myself in a position to play for New Zealand again."
The You Travel Taradale CC premier club cricketer, on debut, spearheaded the Kiwis to a four-run victory over hosts Pakistan in the first test of a three-match series in Abu Dhabi in November. He took a five-wicket bag in the second innings to finish with 7-123 in bowling 23.4 of the 58.4 overs before the Kiwis went on to claim an historic series victory.
Patel says it's no secret New Zealand wickets don't offer as much traction to tweakers as they do to seamers, especially against touring sides.
"You know, for a spin bowler to really get into his work he needs the conditions to break down so, I suppose, against Sri Lanka we didn't have those conditions for that series limited to just two games."
He juxtaposes that with eight four-day, domestic first-class matches where three or four wickets do offer purchase, subject to weather.
"It is what it is but, at the same time, I'm content with what I've put in and the way that I've bowled," he says.
"It's just biding your time and hoping a wicket does come through that offers a bit more spin although it also is simply the reality of playing in New Zealand."
In CD's two-wicket loss to the Cantabrians in the previous shield round at Rangiora, near Christchurch, the wicket was typical of one where he and Astle found some profit from foot-scuff marks in the second innings after a quiet first dig.
"The odd one was biting around the footies but there wasn't really much for the right handers but, to be fair, they bowled quite well and I felt we did too and weren't too far off," he says of the first loss for the Stags in 21 shield matches that saw the defending shield champions loose their top-rung status by two points to the Auckland Aces.
The Aucklander, who became the highest wicket taker in the red-ball format for the third successive season and a whopping 48 scalps last summer, is approaching more CD milestones this week.
Patel needs a dozen more wickets to reach 200 first-class wickets for the Stags although he has snared 13 first-class scalps in matches for New Zealand, for an overall first-class career tally of 201.
However, he will simply park such self-absorbing thoughts to make the collective interests paramount.
"It'll be nice when that does arrive and if I do reach that milestone I'll be very, very happy because it is something quite special to be able to do it in this environment with this group and I have thoroughly enjoyed every moment of it."
On reflection, the loss to the Kings also exposed the need for CD batsmen to snap out of a Twenty20 hangover after winning the Burger King Super Smash competition last month.
"We know McLean Park well and, obviously, it'll offer a little bit more and the Stags are playing good cricket so we need to stamp our authority in this competition in the next four days," says the 2017-18 New Zealand domestic men's player of the year.
The Heinrich Malan-coached CD have not lost a match at the revamped McLean Park since February 2016, when Northern Districts Knights beat them by 284 runs.
They have put aside their loss to the Kings to embrace the realisation that the competition is still alive in a quest for back-to-back titles.
"We want to put ourselves in the best position to win this competition again and that's the big picture so there's no point dwelling on games that have gone by," he says.
Patel also rules out complacency against a win-less Volts because the mantra simply is to never take anyone lightly.
"Cricket's a funny game and anyone can upset anyone on any given day."
Black Cap-in-waiting William Young returns to the fold after he was released yesterday as batting cover in the test match in Hamilton while T20 international newbie Blair Tickner also rejoins the squad after an ankle injury.
Veteran Kieran Noema-Barnett replaces Willem Ludick who is in the Nelson team to defend the Hawke Cup against Hawke's Bay at Saxton Oval from today.
■ CD STAGS: Greg Hay (c, Nelson), Doug Bracewell (HB), Tom Bruce (Taranaki), Dane Cleaver (wk, Manawatū), Kieran Noema-Barnett (HB), Ryan McCone (Horowhenua-Kāpiti), Ajaz Patel (HB), Seth Rance (Wairarapa), Blair Tickner (HB), Ben Wheeler (Marlborough), George Worker (Manawatū), William Young (Taranaki).
Coach: Heinrich Malan. Ast coach: Aldin Smith.
■ OTAGO VOLTS: Matt Bacon (Albion), Warren Barnes (Taieri), Max Chu (wk, Carisbrook Dunedin), Tom Clout (Albion), Jacob Duffy (co-c, Kaikorai), Josh Finnie (Kaikorai), Cam Hawkins (C-Dunedin), Mitch Renwick (Kaikorai), Michael Rippon (Kaikorai), Hamish Rutherford (co-c Albion), Nathan Smith (C-Dunedin), Josh Tasman Jones (Albion).
Coach: Rob Walter.