Having come back from a semi-retirement phase, Vettori has played a major role in New Zealand's march to the World Cup final with 15 wickets in eight games at an economy rate of 3.98.

"Marvelled at his career. He's a tremendous ambassador for the game of New Zealand and also worldwide. I think right throughout his career, he's played at the right spirit," McCullum said ahead of the final clash against Australia here on Sunday.

"He's given over half his life to this game. He's been an outstanding teammate and a very close friend as well. I guess when he comes down on his career he'll still have many fond memories and close mates from his time playing on this team."

McCullum said Vettori's contribution has been immense in his team's campaign so far.

"He's (Vettori) been instrumental to us getting to this point in the tournament, and it's no surprise to me that he has been able to play in every game because he worked so hard to get back. He had this as his vision and his dream to be able to make an impact on the game that he probably hadn't quite made, albeit everything he's done in his career."

McCullum called it a testament to Vettori's commitment.

"It's a testament to a guy with great character and a great bloke and certainly a strong leader in the group. It will be nice not just him but other guys as well to achieve the ultimate success for them," skipper added.

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