NZC selectors have awarded some new faces for their stellar show in domestic cricket.
Kane Williamson is back in the scheme of things as New Zealand have named a 20-player squad for a three-match away Test series against England in July. Williamson, who made his last international appearance in November 2021, missed New Zealand’s recent fixtures due to his stubborn elbow injury. However, the 31-year-old is now back in the squad and would like to do well against the Three Lions.
Alongside the frontline players, NZC selectors have also awarded some new faces for their stellar show in domestic cricket. All-rounder Michael Bracewell, who earned his maiden T20I and ODI call ups earlier this year, has been given a chance and he must buckle up. Wicketkeeper Cam Fletcher, pacer Blair Tickner, opener Hamish Rutherford and pacer Jacob Duffy are the other notable inclusions in the team.
New Zealand have named a strong squad
Spin-bowling all-rounder Rachin Ravindra has also returned to the squad and would like to make a significant mark. Among the regular players, Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Tom Latham, and Henry Nicholls will ply their trade in the series and their experience of playing in the UK will come in handy for the Blackcaps. Notably, this 20-man squad will be reduced to 15 ahead of the series as five IPL-bound players are unlikely to be available for warm-up fixtures.
With the 5 players at the IPL unlikely to be available for the warm-up matches at Hove and Chlemsford, the initial squad of 20 will be reduced to 15 ahead of the 3 Tests against @englandcricket, the 1st of which begins at Lord’s on June 2. More | https://t.co/lDfWsK6mMX #ENGvNZ pic.twitter.com/FRtIowyMoi
— BLACKCAPS (@BLACKCAPS) May 3, 2022
Meanwhile, the first of the three Tests will get underway on June 2 at the iconic Lord’s cricket ground. It must be noted that the Kiwis toured England for a two-match Test series last year as well and walked away with a 1-0 triumph. Days after beating the Three Lions, Kane Williamson’s men thrashed India by eight wickets in the inaugural World Test Championship final to lift the prestigious total.
Notably, 13 of the 15 players from New Zealand’s WTC final squad will take part in the series. The two missing out are BJ Watling and Ross Taylor, who have retired from international cricket.
New Zealand’s 20-Player squad for England Tests: Kane Williamson (c), Tom Blundell (wk), Trent Boult, Michael Bracewell, Devon Conway, Colin de Grandhomme, Jacob Duffy, Cameron Fletcher, Matt Henry, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Daryl Mitchell, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz, Rachin Ravindra, Hamish Rutherford, Tim Southee, Blair Tickner, Neil Wagner, Will Young