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Boult returns to New Zealand T20I team

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New Zealand’s three-match T20I series against Australia in Wellington began on February 21 with Trent Boult back in the lineup. However, the left-arm seamer will only play the second and third T20Is. MI Emirates, his team in UAE’s ILT20 competition, has reached the knockouts. Also, Boult will only have six days off before playing for New Zealand in the second T20I in Auckland if MI Emirates makes Saturday’s final.

Boult has not played for New Zealand since losing to India in the 2023 ODI World Cup semi-final in Mumbai. After joining Deccan Gladiators in Abu Dhabi T10, he joined MI Emirates. This will be his first T20I since New Zealand’s November 2022 T20 World Cup semi-final loss to Pakistan.

Boult returns to New Zealand T20I team

Boult’s comeback is a big help for New Zealand, which will be without captain Kane Williamson on paternity leave and premier allrounder Daryl Mitchell, who is rehabbing a long-term foot ailment. Mitchell has been injured for six to seven months and is now giving himself the greatest opportunity to recuperate for the two-match Test series against Australia in Wellington on February 29.

Central Districts’ big-hitting allrounder Josh Clarkson could debut in Mitchell’s absence due to injury. Clarkson has three New Zealand ODI caps but no T20I caps. Clarkson has the greatest strike rate among batsmen who have played more than 30 innings in New Zealand’s primary domestic T20 tournament, the Super Smash, since 2020.

Although Clarkson, 27, injured his shoulder during the most recent Super Smash, he returned to play for Central Districts in the 50-over Ford Trophy, where he also pitched in with the ball. New Zealand selection manager Sam Wells liked Clarkson’s December ODI bowling against Bangladesh. In a rain-soaked Dunedin game, Clarkson took 2 for 24 in four overs on his international debut.

Jimmy Neesham, playing for Rangpur Riders in the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL), and Michael Bracewell, recovering from a finger injury, were unavailable. Spin-bowling allrounders Mitchell Santner, Rachin Ravindra, and Glenn Phillips will skip the team in Williamson’s absence.

Wells said the T20I series against a quality Australia team will prepare New Zealand for the June World Cup in the USA and West Indies. Australia and New Zealand will play the first T20I at Sky Stadium in Wellington before the last two at Eden Park in Auckland.

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Official Statements

“It’s been pretty crazy really,” Clarkson said, reacting to his T20I call-up. “Pretty crazy to be called up for the Bangladesh series and then now [for] the T20I series against the Aussies…it’s a pretty special feeling.

“Growing up, Aussies are usually the pinnacle and the way they go about their game is sort of something that I try to imitate in my game. But yeah, pretty special feeling for myself and my family as well. I rang the old man yesterday and he’s in shock. He’s already booked his flight.”

“Josh hits the ball as long and as hard as anyone and we were encouraged by his performances with the ball in his maiden ODI series against Bangladesh before Christmas,” Wells said.

“Facing Australia is always special for a New Zealand side and even more so when it’s at home in front of a big Kiwi crowd,” he said. “Australia has named a strong squad which is packed with power and match-winners, so it promises to be an entertaining series. With a T20 World Cup just around the corner in June, the series should provide a good gauge of where the sides are at.”

New Zealand squad for Australia T20Is:

Mitchell Santner (capt), Finn Allen, Trent Boult (second and third T20Is), Mark Chapman, Josh Clarkson, Devon Conway (wk), Lockie Ferguson, Adam Milne, Matt Henry, Glenn Phillips, Rachin Ravindra, Tim Seifert (wk), Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee (first T20I only)

Gulfishaa Avaan
Gulfishaa Avaan
Gulfishaa is writer who delivers engaging and informative news on sports to readers of Ten Sports TV Website.

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