Tauranga [New Zealand], December 29 (ANI): After achieving the milestone of 300 Test wickets, New Zealand pacer Tim Southee said he would love to play for as long as he possibly can, adding that age is just a number and it is only about maintaining high standards of performance.
The 32-year-old on Tuesday became the third New Zealand bowler, after Richard Hadlee and Daniel Vettori, to pick 300 Test wickets, achieving the feat during the first Test against Pakistan here.
"I would love to play for as long as I possibly can. I love doing what I have done and fortunate enough to do it for a period of time now. Obviously, there is high standards that come with representing New Zealand. And as long as you can, I guess, withhold those standards, then I guess age is any number," ESPN Cricinfo quoted Southee as saying.
"I just turned 32 the other day. So I think people think I am probably a little bit older than I am. But it is something I love doing. You look at the likes of James Anderson, still able to achieve what he's achieving at the age of 38, Ross [Taylor] as well, the way he seems to be getting better and better with age as well. So it's it's just a number. So long as you can maintain those standards that are required at this level, then, you know, I would like to continue to play," he added.
Reflecting on the milestone, Southe said: "It is special, and obviously not many people have been able to do it and the two that have, they are two of our greatest-ever cricketers - so it's nice to be in that bracket with those guys. When I was a kid, all I wanted to do was play cricket for New Zealand and I guess to sit here after a reasonable time of doing that and achieving a couple of things along the way... it's a pretty cool feeling."
Southee also stressed that his determination to keep getting better and keep learning has not changed.
"One thing that's never changed is, I guess, the drive and the determination to keep getting better and keep learning. Just because you've played a number of Test matches doesn't mean you can't continue to learn. That's something that's been there from day one, to learn from others in the side and others that you play against," he said.
With good spells from bowlers, Kiwis put themselves firmly on track to register a win against Pakistan in the first Test. Southee picked two while Trent Boult bagged a wicket with the new ball to leave Pakistan three down at stumps on Tuesday. Pakistan will resume their second innings from 71/3 on Day 5. (ANI)