Veteran New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor has been declared fit to play the third and final ODI of the three-match series against Bangladesh in Wellington on March 26. The right-handed batsman has missed the first two games of the ODI series.
The hosts have already wrapped up the series, winning the first two games by eight and five wickets, respectively.
“I was pretty close to playing the last game. If it was a Test or a World Cup semifinal, I would have played. But I decided against it, give it a couple of days. It feels good. It has been a strange old year. I haven’t played any one-day cricket. So looking forward to playing the format I enjoy playing,” Taylor told the media on Thursday.
“It is nice to have wrapped up the series, but there are World Cup points on offer. There’s no dead rubber, it has a bit of context. As we have seen throughout the whole summer, teams coming out of quarantine have taken a couple of games to get ready. We had a bit of luck to go our way in the last game, and I am sure Bangladesh will want to finish the ODI series on a high note,” he added.
Also read: New Zealand crush Bangladesh in 1st ODI
Taylor played a total of 24 ODIs against Bangladesh and scored 1,003 runs at an average of 59.00 with two centuries.
In the first game of the series in Dunedin, Bangladeshi batsmen were clueless against the quality pace attack of the hosts. They were all out for 131. And as a result, the Tigers lost the match by eight wickets.
In the second game, however, the Bangladeshi batting-up was pretty good amassing 271 runs on the board despite a slow start and losing Liton Das early. Bangladesh captain Tamim Iqbal and middle-order batsman Mohammad Mithun responded well hitting a fifty each.
But the total of 271, Bangladesh’s second-highest in New Zealand, wasn’t enough to pull up a victory for the Tigers. Mahedi Hasan, the new right-arm spin-bowling allrounder, picked up two wickets along with Mustafizur Rahman, but the other bowlers failed to display a good show of discipline.
Bangladesh missed at least three catches in the second game. Taylor also believes that if those catches were taken, the result of the game would have been different.
“I don’t think they were far away in the last game. If they took a couple of those catches at a crucial time, we would have been under pressure with guys who haven’t played a lot of cricket. They are always a dangerous team. If we were playing in Bangladesh, you’d have to be even warier of them. They are a good side in those slower conditions, and if anything, it was a pretty slowish wicket in Christchurch,” he said.