New Zealand have confirmed the loss of Corey Anderson and Todd Astle as the latest victims of an injury crisis hitting the Kiwis in the UAE, reports ESPNcricinfo.com.
Anderson’s heel problem is the latest on the New Zealand injury list, joining Martin Guptill – who was sidelined before the tour due to a calf injury – in being ruled out for the rest of the series against Pakistan.
Astle is currently struggling with a knee issue that will certainly sideline him for the first ODI in Abu Dhabi, and possibly put his participation in the rest of the series in jeopardy. The middle-order batsman and leg-spinner will hope to regain his fitness soon as he also forms part of the Test squad taking on Pakistan in the three-match series following the ODIs.
‘Todd’s made good progress over the past couple of days and with his involvement in both the ODI and Test squads; we’re keen to give him every chance to be right,’ commented New Zealand’s newly appointed head coach Gary Stead.
The services of Ajaz Patel have been recalled to replace Astle during his recovery, while batsman George Worker and bowler Lockie Ferguson have been drafted in to replace Guptill and Anderson respectively.
‘It does present another opportunity for Ajaz. He’s impressed us during the UAE tour so far and we have full confidence he can do a job for this team in the 50-over format,’ added Stead.
The New Zealand bowling attack will be boosted by the inclusion of Trent Boult and Matt Henry (who were not included in the T20I squad) but will be frustrated by Anderson’s latest setback, with him having to postpone his return to the ODI set-up since back problems saw him last play ODIs for the Kiwis in the 2017 Champions Trophy.
The first of the three-match ODI series will take place on Wednesday in Abu Dhabi.
New Zealand squad
Kane Williamson (capt)
Colin de Grandhomme
Tom Latham (wk)
BJ Watling (wk)
Photo: Andrew Cornaga/Photosport.co.nz