The team will miss Martin Guptill, who declined to sign a new contract and consequently released by NZC, according to New Zealand captain Kane Williamson. The 36-year-old opener has joined an increasing number of New Zealand athletes seeking to pursue careers abroad.
Franchise cricket has become so prevalent that a T20 league is now available almost every month of the year, offering many cricketers an alluring package. Trent Boult, James Neesham, and Colin de Grandhomme have all chosen to work in that field, leaving New Zealand to juggle a few other things.
"Obviously, he has made a decision to explore a few other options,"
"But as a player and as an experienced member of the group, he has added so much value over the years and been one of our best white-ball players ever."
Guptill has contributed significantly to New Zealand's success with more than 10,000 white-ball runs, but they seem to have moved on from him. He didn't participate in any of their matches during the T20 World Cup and was completely left out of the lineup for the current India series.
Williamson was appreciative of Guptill taking those calls in stride.
"Without getting a playing opportunity, he was outstanding and offering to all the players in the group. So, he's been fantastic in so many areas of the environment. Absolutely, he will be missed, but like I say he's not retired. So there's a lot to keep working through over the next period to get a real feel for how the picture looks."
According to information, Guptill could sign a BBL contract before the next season begins in December. Boult has already played one with the Melbourne Stars and will then play with MI Emirates in the United Arab Emirates. De Grandhomme has announced his retirement, shortly after his name appeared inadvertently at the BBL draught earlier this year. Only Neesham is currently a member of the squad getting ready to play India on Friday.
Williamson recognised that the circumstances had changed and that they must find a solution that works for the team as well as the individual, despite NZC's insistence that they like to give preference to players who are under contract when choosing their squads.
"It's just trying to strike that balance, like we've seen with a few other players who have also sort of looked at some of those other opportunities. It's a bit of a moving landscape. So it's trying to weigh that up and look at how it can all work moving forward."
"Guptill hasn't retired. He is looking at playing some other tournaments while still being available, but like I say, it's balancing that moving forward. He's still very motivated to keep playing and getting better. And I think that's important for all players, even though he has played such a long, amazing career. As a mate and a team-mate over a long period of time, we had a few good chats. And it's managing that time. As a player, you always go through different periods and you get to different stages, and you're trying to basically manage that as best you can."
Williamson, who represents New Zealand and serves as its captain in all three formats, is also dealing with similar concerns, but he repeated last week his intention to continue.
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