After their heartbreaking elimination from the ongoing ODI World Cup 2023, New Zealand will now be shifting their focus to their upcoming two-match Test series against Bangladesh. Travelling to Sylhet for the first Test, the Black Caps will lock horns against Bangladesh in the first Test on Tuesday, November 28.
Ahead of the Test series, in a major development for the side, it was announced that pacer Neil Wagner will be replacing the injured Matt Henry in the Black Caps’ squad for the two-match Test series.
Henry was a part of New Zealand’s side for the ODI World Cup, but after injuring himself in a clash against South Africa on November 1, the 31-year-old will be unable to play against Bangladesh. Furthermore, it is also worth noting that Wagner will be coming into the squad after recently missing out on two rounds of the Plunket Shield; he last played in Tests against Sri Lanka, in March 2023.
With this being the first Test of the latest cycle of the World Test Championship (WTC) 2023, New Zealand will be keen on getting off to a good start to the series and registering a win.
It’ll be great to have Neil’s skill: Sam Wells
Speaking of Neil Wagner’s inclusion in the Test side, New Zealand’s selector Sam Wells came forward to heap praise on the 37-year-old’s ability and opined that he was very excited for the challenges that lies ahead of him specially in the sub-continent conditions. Hence the Black caps selectors are looking to bank on Wagner’s vast experience in the upcoming away tour.
“It’ll be great to have Neil’s skill and experience on the tour of Bangladesh; his record speaks for itself, and we all know what a great competitor he is. He’s played plenty of cricket in the subcontinent, and I know he’s really excited by the challenge ahead,” Sam Wells was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.
Updated NZ squad:
Tim Southee (captain), Tom Blundell (wk), Devon Conway, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Daryl Mitchell, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Glenn Phillips, Rachin Ravindra, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Kane Williamson, Will Young, Neil Wagner