Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Veteran New Zealand spinner Daniel Vettori has postponed an announcement about his Test future following the tragic death of Australian batsman Phillip Hughes.
Vettori admitted that he was unlikely to represent New Zealand in any more Test matches, but decided not to make it official since the cricketing community is still grieving over the loss of Hughes.
“I’ve had a lot of injuries over the last couple of years, particularly my Achilles and it hadn’t allowed me to run, really, and it affected my fitness and I hadn’t played a lot of cricket,” Vettori said. “I think in my mind there wasn’t any more Test cricket in the future, but I didn’t think it was appropriate to retire when I had been out of the team so long, and it was probably easier to just disappear, but this opportunity over the last few days has been special.
“I don’t think I’ll leave the door open, but in the current environment it’s not appropriate to speak of those things. I just want to relax and enjoy this win and get ready for the one-day series.”
Vettori also conceded that some of the players found it extremely difficult to concentrate throughout the third Test against Pakistan in Sharjah due to the tragic circumstances.
“It’s been a very hard Test match to play and we’re lucky that we’ve had Brendon and [coach] Mike Hesson and Mike Sandle, our manager, to lead us and really help the guys get through it, because a lot of guys knew Phillip very well and we felt like he was one of us, and we mourned him as a team-mate,” he said.
Continuing on the topic of the third Test, Vettori revealed that captain Brendon McCullum texted him a few days before the game about representing his country in a Test match one last time.
“It started with a text message from Brendon,” Vettori said. “He obviously knew I was coming over with the A team to play in the one-dayers before the ODI series here, sort of talked about the wickets, and possibly the need for three spinners and sort of went from there.
“The form and fitness has been going really well and I played a warm-up game against UAE and [was] drafted into the squad and very happy to be here.”
Vettori added that he took his time about agreeing to play in the third Test since he is determined to represent New Zealand in the 2015 World Cup.
“Yeah, it did [require some thinking],” Vettori said. “I would have been remiss if I hadn’t thought about the big picture around the World Cup, and the workload was always questionable.
“But I spoke to [New Zealand ODI seamer] Kyle Mills about it and he said he’d do anything to play a Test match for New Zealand and I think that was the thing that tipped me over the edge and particularly knowing that my workload would be relatively small, to come into a New Zealand team that has been doing so well and led so well, it was actually exciting to come into the side.”
Since Vettori wasn’t expecting to represent his country when he travelled to the United Arab Emirates with the New Zealand A team, he revealed that his wife had to courier his Test cap to him.
“My wife couriered it over,” he said. “I was lucky that it made it here in time, it wouldn’t have felt quite right to play a Test match not in this cap. It’s seen a lot of games and a lot of good times and a lot of hard times, so it’s very special to me.”