Trent Boult released from New Zealand contract, to have 'significantly reduced' role with BlackCaps

Trent Boult released from New Zealand contract, to have significantly reduced role with BlackCaps
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Trent Boult released from New Zealand contract, to have 'significantly reduced' role with BlackCaps

Highlights

  • NZC has agreed to release Trent Boult from their contract
  • He wants to spend more time with family and play leagues around the world
  • Boult has been a part of BlackCaps' side since 2011

Trent Boult has been released from his New Zealand contract as the BlackCaps pacer has decided to spend more time with his family and play in domestic leagues across the globe.

With no national contract, the 37-year-old Boult will have a "significantly reduced" role with his country during his twilight years with the BlackCaps, while still being eligible for selection if and when available, according to a press release from New Zealand Cricket (NZC).

The fast bowler, who has picked up 317 wickets in Tests, 169 wickets in ODIs, and 62 scalps in T20Is for New Zealand, had several conversations with the national board before the two said parties reached an agreement.

Boult, who is currently ranked No. 1 in the ICC ODI bowlers' rankings, said it has been a "really tough decision" but "the time is right to move into this next phase".

"I still have a big desire to represent my country and feel I have the skills to deliver at the international level. However, I respect the fact that not having a national contract will affect my chances of selection. Ultimately this decision is about my wife Gert and our three young boys," Boult was quoted in the press release, as saying.

"Family has always been the biggest motivator for me and I feel comfortable with putting it first and preparing ourselves for life after cricket."

Still have big desire to represent New Zealand, says Trent Boult

Boult, who made his international debut in 2011, is aware that the move will diminish his chances of playing for the New Zealand cricket team.

"I still have a big desire to represent my country and feel I have the skills to deliver at the international level. However, I respect the fact that not having a national contract will affect my chances of selection.

"Having said that, as a fast bowler I know I have a limited career span, and I feel the time is right to move into this next phase," added Boult, who has represented the BlackCaps over 200 times across formats.

Meanwhile, NZC said it respected Boult's decision.

"We respect Trent's position. He's been completely honest and up-front with us about his reasoning and, while we're sad to be losing him as a fully-contracted player, he leaves with our best wishes and our sincere thanks.

"Trent's made a massive contribution to the BLACKCAPS since his Test debut in late 2011 and is now considered one of the best multi-format cricketers in the world. We're very proud of what he's achieved.

"We've had several conversations and I know Trent understands that, in terms of selection, NZC will continue to make a priority of those players with either central or domestic contracts," said chief executive David White.

Boult, who has been a regular face in the Indian Premier League (IPL), likely earns far less than those from the other bigger cricketing nations. As of now, he only plays for the Indian T20 league but is clearly looking to change that. Boult has picked up 92 wickets in 78 games in the IPL across eight seasons, having represented Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), Mumbai Indians (MI), and Delhi Capitals (DC).

The New Zealand cricketer's move has come amid increasing questions raised against the packed international schedule, with England Test captain Ben Stokes saying there is "too much cricket". The English all-rounder recently announced retirement from ODI cricket to prolong his Test and T20I career.

Prior to that South Africa's wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock had called it quits in Tests to focus on the white-ball game.

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