New Zealand dropped veteran batsman Ross Taylor for the Twenty20 series against Pakistan, while Kane Williamson and Trent Boult have been recalled in the Kiwi squad. Glenn Phillips and Devon Conway, who featured in a Twenty20 world record 181-run stand for the third wicket against the West Indies last month, have retained their places in the side leaving no room for the 36-year-old Taylor.
However, Williamson’s inclusion for the second and third match is conditional on the birth of his first child, which had seen him withdraw from the ongoing second test against West Indies in Wellington.
“We were thrilled Glenn and Devon were able to take their opportunities so well in the previous series and we’re keen to give them the chance to back that up against a strong Pakistan T20 outfit,” said selector Gavin Larsen on Saturday.
“Their inclusion and the return of Kane means we’ve left out Ross Taylor. This was, as you’d imagine, a very tough decision as Ross has been a consistent performer for us, but unfortunately, we just couldn’t find room in the squad for him due to the quality and form of the other batsmen,” he added.
At the same time, the New Zealand T20I squad sees a comeback for legspinner Todd Astle and seamer Blair Tickner, while seamer Jacob Duffy could be in line for his T20I debut.
“It’s a special time for Jacob who’s taken his game to another level this summer and I know he’s excited to join the Blackcaps camp for the first time.
“It’s great to have the class of Kane and Trent returning to our T20 side having missed the West Indies series after their starring roles in the IPL in November. Williamson will return and lead the side for games two and three, but we’ll obviously need to take a wait and see approach in relation to the arrival of his and Sarah’s first child,” said Gavin Larsen.
“Mark Chapman’s in the squad for the opening match at Eden Park and is on stand-by for Kane for the remaining games of the series,” he added.
The chief selector further confirmed that fast bowler Lockie Ferguson wasn’t available for selection due to a bone stress injury.
New Zealand Squad For 1st T20I:
Mitchell Santner (c), Todd Astle, Doug Bracewell, Mark Chapman, Devon Conway, Jacob Duffy, Martin Guptill, Scott Kuggeleijn, Jimmy Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Tim Seifert (wk), Ish Sodhi, Blair Tickner
New Zealand Squad For 2nd and 3rd T20Is:
Kane Williamson (c), Todd Astle, Trent Boult, Devon Conway, Martin Guptill, Kyle Jamieson, Scott Kuggeleijn, Daryl Mitchell, Jimmy Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Tim Seifert (wk), Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee