Ross Taylor to ease into farewell tour with Netherlands warmups

Ruled out of a first-class game for the Central Stags as a close contact of a COVID-19 case, the 38-year-old will instead play white-ball matches for a developing New Zealand XI at McLean Park in Napier from next week.

FILE PHOTO: Taylor finished his 112-match test career in January on a high, capturing Bangladesh's final wicket with his part-time spin to seal a series-levelling victory.   -  Action Images via Reuters

New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor will look to exit COVID-19 isolation and play straight back into form in warmup matches against the Netherlands before bidding farewell to cricket in the following ODI series.

Ruled out of a first-class game for the Central Stags as a close contact of a COVID-19 case, the 38-year-old will instead play white-ball matches for a developing New Zealand XI at McLean Park in Napier from next week.

"It'd be nice to have got in there and played for the Staggies," he said in a video call from home.

"But to play some white-ball cricket with higher intensity, I think it’s ideal preparation.

"It's a great opportunity to see the Netherlands side up close and obviously there's a few Kiwi connections to them as well."

New Zealand's most prolific batsman finished his 112-match test career in January on a high, capturing Bangladesh's final wicket with his part-time spin to seal a series-levelling victory.

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The ODI series against the Netherlands starts March 29 in Mount Maunganui, with the final two matches at Taylor's home ground of Seddon Park in Hamilton, where family and friends will gather.

"I'm not expecting to have a bowl," the veteran of 233 ODIs joked.

"I suppose it's emotional when you've done something for so long ... Just playing on the home ground in front of family and friends will have its emotional attachments.

"But I'm excited for the next chapter and excited to play my last series. It's been a while since we played one."

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Taylor will be the 'greybeard' of a New Zealand XI captained by Wellington batsman Michael Bracewell, the nephew of former test players John and Brendon.

Taylor said Bracewell was closing in on an international debut after a stellar domestic season and with spots up for grabs in New Zealand's white ball squads.

"This is an opportunity for him to put his name up there, and I'm sure if it's not this summer, which wouldn't surprise me, in the next year or so I'm sure he'll get a run."

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