At home with the Tay­lors

AT just eight months old, Bren­dan Tay­lor’s twins Michael and Sam might be too young to un­der­stand but the en­tire coun­try owes them a huge debt of grat­i­tude.

The Sunday Mail (Zimbabwe) - - SPORT - Ti­nashe Kusema

AF­TER all it was them — to­gether with their two other sib­lings — that were the sway­ing fac­tor in the for­mer Zim­babwe cricket cap­tain’s de­ci­sion to turn down a con­tract ex­ten­sion of­fer at County Cricket out­fit Not­ting­hamshire and re­turn home.

“I was of­fered a con­tract ex­ten­sion but it was no longer about me any­more,” said Tay­lor in an in­ter­view at his Harare home last Wed­nes­day.

“I had a con­ver­sa­tion with my son, Ma­son, who asked me when I was com­ing back. He told me he missed me and begged me to come back home.

“It broke my heart, and I think it was at that mo­ment that I fi­nally made the de­ci­sion to come back. The twins were also born ear­lier this year, they were grow­ing with­out me and it hurt,” he said.

In the time since his re­turn, roughly 12 days ago, the Tay­lors have moved into their plush two storey four bed­room house in Bor­row­dale, a stone throw away from Sam Levy’s shops.

The 31-year-old has tried to spend as much time as pos­si­ble with his fam­ily — wife Kelly and their four boys Alexi, Ma­son and the twins.

Kelly is thrilled to have her hus­band back home.

“It has been a dif­fi­cult cou­ple of years, the new ad­di­tions, rais­ing four kids, the highs and the lows and hav­ing to face what­ever came my way with­out my hus­band,” she said.

“Some­times I felt like call­ing and telling him to come back home but knew that ev­ery­thing he did was to bet­ter him­self and our fam­ily.

“I was also for­tu­nate enough to have a solid sup­port struc­ture around me, what with my mother, who we stay with, good friends here and in Eng­land.”

Tay­lor re­vealed that his heart was al­ways with the Chevrons and de­scribed watch­ing Zim­babwe fall­ing 2-3 to Afghanistan ear­lier this year was heart-wrench­ing.

Tay­lor watched the game live and his dis­ap­point­ment at the de­feat was only wors­ened by the so­cial me­dia spat he had with for­mer Zim­bab­wean in­ter­na­tional Mark Ver­meulen.

Tay­lor felt Ver­meulen’s crit­i­cism of the team was over­board and fought in the Chevrons’ cor­ner.

“I was dis­ap­pointed to hear peo­ple crit­i­cize the boys with­out fully un­der­stand­ing the fac­tors that led to the de­feat or the fact that no one will ever be as hard on them as they are on them­selves,” he said.

Tay­lor has no apolo­gies for tak­ing on Ver­meulen.

“I have no sym­pa­thy for him, l stand by ev­ery­thing I said.

“As an ex-player, whose sta­tis­tics were well be­low av­er­age and the fact that he is bit­ter with Zim­babwe Cricket, Mark has no leg to stand on, let alone crit­i­cize the team.

“Look at his track record, what he did to the academy and the way he has han­dled him­self, the guy has no re­morse and acts like the whole world owes him.

“When the team wins or is win­ning I don’t see him go­ing on Face­book or other so­cial me­dia plat­forms to con­grat­u­late the boys.

‘It is only when the boys lose that he has some­thing to say. I am very pas­sion­ate about my coun­try and will never let any­one who failed in his days come out and crit­i­cize the boys.”

Tay­lor re­cently signed a four year con­tract with ZC and looks set to make his re­turn to the field when the West Indies tour later this month.

“I have missed wear­ing the na­tional shirt and look for­ward to go­ing out there and do my part for the coun­try,” he said.

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