Trent Boult hoping he’s not done with Test cricket just yet

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Trent Boult is aware that his decision to withdraw from New Zealand Cricket’s (NZC) central contract earlier this month is going to “affect” his selection in Tests but he hopes he hasn’t played his last match in the long format yet.

New Zealand are scheduled to travel to Pakistan in December 2022 and January 2023 for two Tests, and will host England for a two-Test series in February 2023 – including a day-night match in Mount Maunganui, Boult’s home ground – and Sri Lanka in March.

However, Boult is likely to miss the Pakistan tour due to his commitments with T20 leagues abroad. He is among the 12 players who have been given platinum status in Australia’s BBL draft, which comes with a price tag of AU$340,000. The BBL begins on December 13, with the group stage running till January 25. Boult has also signed up for the UAE-based ILT20 – which is expected to be played between January and February – where he would be representing MI Emirates.

“I hope not,” Boult said when asked if the Test he played against England in June was potentially his last. “I’m fully aware that with the decision I made to give that contract back, it’s going to affect that selection. I’m taking it almost week by week really.

“There’s a lot of cricket to be played before then. I know the next series is in Pakistan and then at my home ground [Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui] against England in the new year, but it’s too far away to tell. I’m going to leave that with New Zealand Cricket and respect their decision.”

For New Zealand’s next assignment, the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy in Australia featuring three ODIs, Boult has held on to his spot, but NZC had made it clear that his future selection would be made on a case-by-case basis and that the board would prioritise contracted players.

Boult also said that he wants to have “another crack” at the ODI World Cup next October, slated to be held in India. He is also expected to lead New Zealand’s pace attack in the upcoming T20 World Cup in Australia in October. If he does feature in the global event next year, it would be Boult’s third ODI World Cup.

“I remember talking to Kane [Williamson] after 2019 at Lord’s [where England pipped New Zealand in the final] and saying we want to be there in four years’ time,” Boult said. “It’s only a few months around the corner and there’s a lot of hunger to try to have another crack at that trophy.”

Boult, 33, reiterated that his decision to withdraw his central contract and move into “life after cricket” was primarily to spend more time with his wife and three children. “Without getting too financially specific, I’d be more able to bring them on tour [when playing T20 leagues],” Boult said. “I’ve got three young boys that only see dad for eight weeks a year at the current moment. If I don’t play any international cricket – obviously I still want to – then that might be a couple of leagues a year and 10 months at home rather than the other way around.

“I’m not getting too far ahead – it’s a hard one to forecast at the moment.”