Ross Taylor will be First Cricketer Ever Who play "100 Games Each in all 3 Format" - Test (/T20i & ODI

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Ross Taylor will be First Cricketer Ever Who play "100 Games Each in all 3 Format" - Test (/T20i & ODI

Post by Harmer »

:saurabh: :saurabh: :saurabh: :dance2:

Didn't think I'd play Test cricket again after my first series: Ross Taylor

February 14 2020 :saurabh:

Taylor will be the first cricketer to play 100 games in all three formats.

New Zealand's veteran batsman Ross Taylor is on the cusp of making history - of becoming the first cricketer ever to play 100 international matches in each of the three formats - in the first Test against India in Wellington, starting on February 21.

The 35-year-old, who has 99 Test matches to his tally since making his debut in 2007, felt he would not cut it at the highest level in this format following just his first tryst with it. Taylor scored 15 and 4 on debut in Johannesburg and followed that up with similarly listless performances in Centurion - with 17 and 8, chasing at wide deliveries outside the off-stump on three out of those four occasions.

Though the two-Test series left him with a feeling of the chance of never donning the whites for New Zealand again, Taylor felt he lucked out with respect to the timing of the start of his career.

"I think after my first Test series against South Africa, I didn't know if I would play Test cricket again. Probably lucky with the timing of things, Twenty20 cricket came along in 2005 and I made my debut in 2006. So it's probably a timing issue to be able to get there but it's nice hopefully to be the first player to do it and hopefully with time, there's going to be a lot more players around the world."

Taylor happens to be one of only three cricketers to breach the 100-games mark in the shortest format. The other two - Shoaib Malik and Rohit Sharma - are 35 and 32 Tests respectively, putting into perspective the longevity of Taylor's career. The former skipper believes the turnaround - in fortunes and his own opinion - happened in his first home appearance, against England in March 2008.

In the first Test of the home series in Hamilton, Taylor scored his maiden Test hundred, forging stands with Brendon McCullum and Daniel Vettori to rescue his side from a queasy situation in the first innings. The effort set New Zealand up for a big first innings lead, and an eventual victory. Incidentally, Taylor's first ODI hundred too came in his third match in the format, and again at home, reaffirming his belief that he belonged at the highest level.

"It was probably here [change of opinion]. So I played that first series against South Africa. Got dropped for Bangladesh, two Tests at home, and then I played my first Test at home against England and I got a hundred in that first Test. That's probably the first time I think I believed that I could play at this level. Probably fortunate throughout my whole career -- that was my third Test, to get a hundred. And then in my one-day career, I was able to get a hundred in my third game as well. To get those milestones early on definitely helped to believe that I belong and that I am good enough to play at this level."

Despite the early, reassuring century, it was his effort in Manchester two and a half months later that Taylor rates as one of his best Test hundreds, albeit in a defeat. Jamie How's 64 at the top and Kyle Mills's 57 at the other end were the only two batting efforts of note besides Taylor's exceptional 154, that came off just 176 balls and involved 17 fours and 5 sixes.

Taylor also has his twin efforts [142 and 74] in Colombo right up his list, since it came right after the captaincy issue with Brendon McCullum and coach Mike Hesson that rocked New Zealand cricket in 2012. There's Taylor's mammoth 290 in Perth against Australia and a third innings century in Dubai against Pakistan - both draws - that he rates highly.

Though Wellington, the venue of his landmark Test, didn't make the cut, Taylor reckoned it is a venue that holds a special place in his heart. Taylor's other double ton - against Bangladesh - came there, while he also has a century against India and a handful of fifties at the venue.

"I think I have been happy with what I have achieved to date. Test cricket and cricket in general as a batter, you go through a lot of ups and downs and that's definitely what I have been through, and as a team as well. But Wellington holds a special place in my heart and I am sure having a lot of family and friends there will be something that I will be proud of and look back on at the end of my career with fond memories," Taylor said. ... 100th-test
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