The New Zealand cricket team suffer yet another setback as they lose Kane Williamson for the first two ODIs against India due to a shoulder injury. Tom Latham will lead the Black Caps in the absence of their talismanic skipper.
Mark Chapman replaces Williamson in the upcoming ODIs at Hamilton and Auckland. Williamson, after a dismal run of form, almost took his side to victory single-handedly in the third T20I.
The 29-year old leader looked in sublime touch during his knock of 95 off just 48 deliveries. Williamson smashed eight boundaries and six maximums with an injured shoulder, which he sustained while fielding in the Hamilton T20I. Since then, he has not featured for the Kiwis in the subsequent T20Is as the Indian side whitewashed the hosts by 5-nil.
“Kane has had an X-ray scan, which cleared him of anything serious, but it’s best for his recovery that he avoids aggravating the joint for the next few days,” quoted team physio Vijay Vallabh, according to Cricbuzz.
“He will continue his fitness training sessions throughout the week and will start batting again on Friday with the prospect of being available for game three next Tuesday,” continued Vallabh.
The last time India took on New Zealand in an ODI series in their backyard, the Men in Blue won the series by a 4-1 margin. The onus, then, remains on the likes of Guptill, Taylor, and Latham to put on competitive scores against the strong Indian batting lineup.
However, the selector of New Zealand Cricket (NZC) was optimistic about the batting potential of replacement Mark Chapman.
“It’s great to welcome Mark back into the one-day unit off the back of consecutive centuries for New Zealand A against a strong India A side. Mark’s a versatile player who can cover multiple batting positions and his fielding is a real upshot to have in the squad,” commented selector Gavin Larsen.
Revised squad of New Zealand:
Tom Latham (Captain/Keeper), Martin Guptill, Ross Taylor, Mark Chapman, Colin de Grandhomme, Scott Kuggeleijn, James Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Tom Blundell, Henry Nicholls, Hamish Bennett, Kyle Jamieson, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee