NZ vs AUS: New Zealand announce 13-man squad for Australia T20Is

New Zealand

New Zealand have named a 13-member squad for their upcoming T20I series against Australia, starting Monday, February 22. The hosts have picked Martin Guptill, who’s experienced a lingering hamstring injury in recent times. The 34-year-old Guptill played four matches for Auckland in the country’s domestic T20 tournament and scored 46 runs at an average of 11.50.

He also didn’t play in the last two games of the event, which ended on Saturday, February 13. Finn Allen, the 21-year-old Auckland-born right-handed batsman, has been named as a backup in case Guptill can’t make the cut for the T20I series.

Selector Gavin Larsen couldn’t ignore the fact that Guptill has been one of the key members of the Black Caps’ setup. However, Guptill needs to prove his fitness before he could be drafted in.

Larsen backing Martin Guptill

“Martin’s our incumbent opener and our highest T20 International run-scorer so we’re backing him to do the job at the top of the order. He will need to prove his fitness and it’s good to know we have a ready replacement in Finn on standby,” Larsen was quoted as saying.

As far as Allen is concerned, he smashed 512 runs in the T20 competition with two scores in the 90s against Otago and Northern Districts. He also scored 73, 66, and 75 against Auckland, Central Districts, and Northern Districts respectively.

Devon Conway, who notched a 63-ball 93 in the Super Smash decider, stated that it didn’t diminish the series by any means. In six T20Is thus far, Conway has scored 174 runs at an average of 58 with a top score of an unbeaten 65.

“It’s about winning a game; whoever’s playing in that match is irrelevant for me. Yes, it’s pretty cool to come up against some of those guys have been around for a long time but we’ve got a job to do,” Conway said.

The opening T20I against the Aussies will take place at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch. Dunedin, Wellington, Auckland, and Mount Maunganui are the hosts for the remaining T20Is.

New Zealand squad:

Kane Williamson (c), Hamish Bennett, Trent Boult, Mark Chapman, Devon Conway, Martin Guptill, Kyle Jamieson, Jimmy Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Mitchell Santner, Tim Seifert, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee.