Ross Taylor will play his 100th Test match when New Zealand take on India in Wellington in the first Test match of 2020. The veteran Kiwi middle-order batsman was in the form of his life in the ODI series where he made 194 runs, being dismissed just once in three games.
Taylor will be a vital member of New Zealand's Test squad as they meet India in a highly-anticipated Test series. The focus has often gone to Kane Williamson, Tom Latham and BJ Watling in recent times but Taylor has been in good form and flying under the radar could just make him an even more dangerous proposition.
Numbers vs India
Ross Taylor has played 12 Tests against India, scoring 748 runs while averaging 34 in the format. His last three Tests against India have come in India and his numbers are pretty ordinary. But early in his career, Taylor had started off by making two hundreds in 2009 against a visiting Indian side - a 151 at Napier and a 107 at Wellington. Overall, he has three tons against India, his joint second-most against any opponent in Tests.
Numbers in New Zealand
Taylor is a veteran of 99 Tests and he has 7174 Test runs, the most by any Black Caps batsman ever in the format. He averages 46.28 with 19 centuries and 33 fifties in Tests but his impact has been even more profound in home Test matches. Taylor has 3601 runs in New Zealand in Tests, averaging 56.26 with 12 of his 19 hundreds coming here. Since 2016, Taylor has been even more brilliant at home, averaging 64.52 in 15 Tests with four centuries, including a double ton. In his last five innings in home Tests, Taylor has a double century, a hundred and a fifty.
Numbers under Williamson and recent form
Taylor's numbers in Tests make for interesting viewing when split by captains he has played under.
Captains and Taylor's Test averages:
- Brendon McCullum - 49.1
- Daniel Vettori - 41.12
- Tom Latham - 22
- Kane Williamson - 51.61
- Ross Taylor himself - 47.26
Taylor's batting numbers are the best under Kane Williamson with six of his 19 hundreds coming in his tenure, a span of just 28 Test matches.
Taylor had a major dip in form in 2018 when he averaged just 23.08 in seven Test matches, but this is sandwiched between two outstanding years in Test cricket - 2017 where he averaged 81.6 and 2019 where he averaged 55.18.
In 2020, Taylor has played just one Test and couldn't make much of an impact. His recent form at home though makes him a potent threat in New Zealand's batting line-up as the series against India gets underway.
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Michael Bradley