Ross Taylor becomes first player to play 100 matches in all three formats

The right-handed batsman is already his country’s leading run-scorer in Test and ODI with 7174 and 8570 runs respectively to his name.

Ross Taylor was accompanied by his children during the National Anthem before the start of the first Test match against India.   -  REUTERS

You can freeze the frame. Ross Taylor walking into the Basin Reserve with his children ahead of his 100th Test to a rousing ovation from the fans at the Basin Reserve.

Not many get to play 100 Tests - it’s not just your skill, but fitness and mental strength that determine one’s longevity in the toughest format - and fewer get to do so before their home crowd.

Following a pleasant cap presentation ceremony - former Kiwi stumper Ian Smith spoke on the occasion - Taylor took in the moments with his family, friends, team-mates and fans.

India vs New Zealand 1st Test: Scorecard | Commentary

Cheering him on from the stands was Brendon McCullum, another Kiwi in the 100 Test club. Taylor now has to finish drinking 100 bottles of wine, given to him on the occasion, with his family and friends.

And this could prove more demanding than making runs for the old soldier.

“Really excited about the occasion. It’s very nice for the team and the family to experience something they might never do again,” said Taylor, who made his Test debut in 2007.

“I’ll need some help drinking (the hundred bottles of wine), but they can be stored for a while. It keeps the tradition from Fleming, Brendon (McCullum) and Dan (Daniel Vettori) who all played over a hundred Tests each and hopefully we can celebrate this one with a win,” he added.

The 35-year-old played his 100th T20 International against India last month and has also played 231 ODIs for New Zealand. Taylor is also his country’s leading run-scorer in Test and ODI with 7174 and 8570 runs respectively to his name.

In T20 Internationals, he has scored 1909 runs and former captain Brendon McCullum (2140 from 71 matches) and opener Martin Guptill (2536 from 88 matches) are the only two Kiwi players above him on the list.

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