Daniel Vettori refuses to sign new contract

Image courtesy of: icc-cricket.com

Vettori is hoping to return in six months time

Veteran New Zealand spinner Daniel Vettori has refused to sign a new contract with New Zealand Cricket (NZC) after undergoing surgery on his troublesome Achilles tendon and announcing his uncertainty over whether he will fully recover from the injury.

 Vettori is hoping to return after six months, but until he becomes fully fit, he will not sign a contract with NZC or Northern Districts.

The 34-year-old went under the knife after the recently concluded Champions Trophy, during which he made his ODI return after a break of two and a half years.

It has been nearly a year since he played his last Test match and he last represented New Zealand in a Twenty20 International during the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka in September last year.

“I am very focused on my recovery from my recent surgery and will be working hard to get back onto the playing field over the next six-month period,” Vettori said. “Given the time I’ll need to spend out of the game with my recovery, and the level of uncertainty about when I may play again, it doesn’t feel right that I take up a retainer contract this year. I will now focus on my rehabilitation in the coming months, with the overall goal of making a return to the cricket field during the summer months. Hopefully it goes well.

“I’m really hopeful the surgery is the final effort to get it right, and speaking to the surgeon, he’s pretty confident he could get it right. He’s dealt with similar sorts of injury in the past and had guys come back to full sporting activity, so let’s just hope it works.

“I suppose it’s been a real grind the last 18 months with the injury and in a lot of ways it has probably diminished some of the appetite to do a lot of things but I think that’s purely down to the injury so … if I can get this injury right, who knows. This has been unlike anything else I’ve had to deal with in the past. I just want to get it right then the future will crystallise after that.”

Speaking about Vettori’s decision not to renew his contract, NZC chief executive David White said: “In the ICC Champions Trophy Dan showed the immense value that he still brings to the Black Caps side. Unfortunately Dan has indicated he’s in a position where he feels uncomfortable taking a contract this season, as he builds towards making a return to the cricket field.

“As always, Dan has made his decision in the best interests of New Zealand Cricket and we appreciate his honesty and up-front approach. There’s no doubting Dan’s hunger to continue competing, and we hope to see him back playing for the Black Caps again when the time is right.”

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