Tim Southee has been ruled out of the third Test in Hamilton due to a left hamstring tear.
The 28-year-old paceman suffered a grade one tear of his left hamstring during the second Test defeat in Wellington.
‘He felt discomfort following the second Test in Wellington and as a precautionary measure was sent for a scan,’ it was revealed in a statement by New Zealand cricket.
‘While only a minor tear, he will not be fit for the upcoming match beginning Saturday.’
This news comes as a major blow to the Black Caps who are still unsure about the fitness of their star speedster Trent Boult, who was ruled out of the second Test in Wellington.
Ross Taylor, who picked up a calf injury in the first Test, failed to recover in time, which could mean New Zealand would be without two, potentially three, key players for the series decider in Hamilton.
Southee will not be replaced in the squad, with Neil Wagner and Matt Henry the remaining two pace options. Medium-pacers Jimmy Neesham and Colin de Grandhomme are set to fill the all-rounder roles.
The Proteas have also been dealt an injury blow with Quinton de Kock set to undergo a fitness Test on Friday to determine his availability.
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