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New Zealand will not attempt to change Stephen Fleming's mind if reports he is considering ending his international career after next month's Test series against England are confirmed.

It was widely assumed the 34-year-old former captain would retire at the end of this summer's tour of England in June, but reports from New Zealand are suggesting he is ready to end his 106-Test career after the upcoming home series.

If that proves to be the case, the news would be a further blow to a New Zealand side who have lost Nathan Astle, Craig McMillan and Shane Bond in the last couple of years and are rated as major under-dogs for next month's Test series.

Current captain Daniel Vettori admitted the potential loss of Fleming would be a big setback, but insisted it would be a waste of time attempting to persuade him to reverse his decision.

"Stephen has always been strong in his thoughts and decisions and I don't think it will be my place to try and twist his arm," said Vettori.

"I know he's been through it with a lot of guys who have come up to him and told him they were going to retire and he's always found it difficult to try and get them to change their mind so I think that once Stephen makes his decision it will be final.

"I've played with Stephen for a long, long time and he's been such an instrumental part of the side and our success over the years.

"I don't know his decision at this stage and we hope he plays on for as long as he can, but we also understand that people at the age of 34 or 35 start reflecting on their careers and other things they want to do so we'll sit tight and wait for Stephen's decision."

The possibility of Fleming's imminent retirement was not the main concern for Vettori, however, as he prepares for a potential backlash from England in Tuesday`s second match of the one-day series at Seddon Park.

Having upset the odds by cruising to a six-wicket victory in Wellington on Saturday, Vettori believes New Zealand will now have to weather a storm from the tourists as they attempt to bounce back and level the five-match series.

"I suppose England will be feeling the same as we were after the Twenty20 games," conceded Vettori.

"They're a strong unit and a competitive one and the guys I know within their team don't like losing so they're probably going to come back pretty hard at us.

"As well as asking my team for consistency, it's also a little bit about handling how hard England will come at us whether they bat or bowl first.

"I've always said it's going to be incredibly tight this series so if a team can get 2-0 ahead it will make a huge difference."
 
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