Trent Boult is eyeing the chance to "create a bit of history" as he prepares to travel to England to join his team-mates ahead of the World Test Championship final against India later this month.
Boult opted to return to New Zealand after the IPL was suspended to spend some time with his family instead of traveling to the UK via the Maldives, even though it meant a further two weeks in managed isolation and the likelihood of missing both Tests against England. Since completing that period, he has been preparing at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui ahead of flying to the UK on Thursday.
"The way the group has travelled and performed around New Zealand and the world, the boys are in a great place to hopefully create a bit of history," he said.
"I've taken a while to understand the process with qualifying, how everything works with the points, still think no one knows how that actually works, but to get into that final the excitement is ramping up now. Once I step foot in the UK, get that chance to smell the English fresh air and see the ball move around a little bit I'll definitely be excited."
Boult, who has 281 Test wickets at 28.02, has been getting used to the Dukes ball that will be used for the WTC final in Southampton and is excited about what it could offer him. His previous four Tests in England have brought him 21 wickets at 23.14.
"I haven't had too much experience with it, played a handful of Tests over in England. It reacts a lot differently, then you have to weigh in all these different venues," he said. "I'm sure the boys are very excited to get it in their hands and see it move around, hopefully we can entertain you a little bit over the next wee while."
New Zealand coach Gary Stead said on Monday that Boult was unlikely to feature in the second Test against England at Edgbaston before the WTC final, although Boult himself suggested he had not completely ruled out hope of making an appearance. "Hopefully I can get over there, get settled in and be part of that second Test as well," he said.
After the final, there is a gap in New Zealand's schedule and Boult will face another two weeks in a hotel on his return home. "If you can keep busy and not let yourself too deep in your thoughts and whine about things then you find a way to get through," he said. "[We have] been very lucky to be still be working in this current climate so it's the price you have to play."
He also has his eye on resuming his IPL stint with the Mumbai Indians if the tournament restarts as planned in the UAE in late September. "Looks like it's moving forward to the UAE where it ran very nicely last year. So if I get the chance I'll be looking forward to finishing that campaign off nicely," he added.