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Ross Taylor calls time on Test career: A lookback at the New Zealand icon’s red ball legacy

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Former New Zealand captain Ross Taylor brought an end to his 15-year Test career with a wicket against Bangladesh in the tourists’ second Test against the Kiwis. It was just the third wicket he claimed over the course of his Test career.

Taylor exits red ball cricket as New Zealand’s highest run-getter in Test cricket. The 37-year-old, who made his Test debut against South Africa in 2007, has been one of the cornerstones of New Zealand cricket over the past decade.

During his career, Taylor played in 112 Tests and captained the Black Caps in 14 Test matches. He broke countless records along the way and was a part of the side that became the inaugural winners of the World Test Championship in 2021.

Comfortable in most conditions across the globe, Taylor is widely regarded by many as one of the greatest middle-order batters in Tests. With that in mind, here we take a closer look at some of his achievements and incredible stats from his illustrious Test career.

Total runs in Test cricket

Ross Taylor ended his Test career with 7,683 runs in 112 Tests at an average of 44.66 and a strike rate of 59.29. He has 19 centuries as well as 35 fifties in his 15-year career in red ball cricket and is New Zealand’s leading run-scorer in Tests.

Highest individual score in Test cricket

Ross Taylor’s greatest Test innings came against Australia in the 2015 Perth Test following a first-innings knock of 290 runs off 374 balls.

Taylor smashed as many as 43 boundaries as he guided New Zealand - who were 87 for 2 at one point - to a mammoth score of 624 in response to the Aussies’ 559/9d.

The 37-year-old ended up with the Player of the Match award as his scores of 290 and 36* ensured that the Black Caps drew the Test. His 290 puts him third on the list behind Brendon McCullum (302) and Martin Crowe (299) for the highest individual score by a New Zealander in Tests.

Other stats and achievements

Ross Taylor is the joint-most-capped Test player for New Zealand, having equalled Daniel Vettori’s (112) record for most Test matches in the second Test against Bangladesh.

Ross Taylor is the third New Zealand player to register 5,000 runs and 50 fielding dismissals in Test cricket.

Ross Taylor is second on the list for most Test centuries by a New Zealand batter (19), after Kane Williamson (24).

Ross Taylor is second on the list for most Test dismissals by a New Zealand fielder (163), after Stephen Fleming (171).

Ross Taylor along with Jesse Ryder registered the second-best fourth-wicket partnership by a New Zealand pair in Tests (271 vs India, Napier, 2009) after Kane Williamson and Henry Nicholls (369 vs Pakistan, Christchurch, 2021).

Ross Taylor recorded three double centuries over the course of his Test career and has hit more fours (932) in red ball cricket than any other player from New Zealand.

Author: William Paul

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Featured photo: AFP / Marty Melville

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