I've been incredibly lucky - McCullum reflects on ODI career


New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum says he is lucky to have represented his country for 14 years after ending his one-day international career with a 2-1 series win over Australia on Monday.

McCullum hit three sixes - taking his career ODI total to 200 maximums - in an explosive 47-run knock before New Zealand successfully defended 246 to beat Australia by 55 runs in Hamilton.

In December, the 34-year-old confirmed he will retire after the Test series against Australia, which starts in Wellington on Friday. 

McCullum was welcomed onto the field by a guard of honour to mark the occasion of his final ODI outing - his international debut in 50-over cricket also came against Australia in January 2002 - and he thanked his team-mates and the fans for their support over the years.

"I have been incredibly lucky to play for 14 years, to represent my country and play with some great blokes and make some great friends, not just in our own country but in other countries as well," he said.

"Not many people get that opportunity but I want to thank everyone for supporting me and this team over a long period of time, they're some memories I'll hold for the rest of my life.

"We're very lucky to do what we do and I know that every single one of us doesn't take it for granted and wants to do the best [we can] playing for New Zealand and I've certainly appreciated all that over the years."

McCullum praised the bowling partnership of Ish Sodhi (2-31) and Doug Bracewell (1-15) for limiting Australia to 38 runs and taking three wickets from a combined 12 overs, and felt New Zealand were at their best at Seddon Park.

"The way that Ish played, the way he bowled under pressure for a guy coming back into the environment shows how strong he is and what a special talent he is.

"Doug Bracewell has bowled brilliantly all year for us and for him to come in after sitting on the sidelines for a period of time and step up in those clutch moments is really important.

"When you play Australia you know you've got to turn up and play your best cricket. I think tonight for 80 per cent of the game we were outstanding. You're always seeking the perfect game but for the way that we bowled and the way that we fielded was testament to the character within this side.

"To beat Australia you've got to play well, and it sets up two really exciting Test matches as well."