New Zealand captain Kane Williamson on Thursday pulled out of the second Test against the West Indies in Wellington as he awaits the imminent arrival of his first child.
The news has been confirmed by Gary Stead, the Black Caps head coach, in a video message posted on New Zealand Cricket’s (NZC) official Twitter handle on Thursday.
In the video message, Gary Stead also revealed that Will Young, who made his debut in the first Test, will slot in at No. 3, while Tom Latham will take over as the captain.
“It’s a decision we have come to around, I guess, the best decision for him [Williamson] and Sarah, and also for our team long-term, and in terms of him being in a good place to be with Sarah as well. Young will come in and bat three, it’s a logical replacement that he just slips into that position. Will’s played there a lot, so, yeah, it’s a natural replacement.
“Tom Latham will take over as captain. He has been Test captain before in the past for us, and he’s got a calm head on his shoulders, and I know with a lot of other leaders in our team that he will lean on them for their support as well,” Gary stead said.
Latham has led New Zealand in one Test, earlier this year against Australia in Sydney when Williamson was indisposed. New Zealand lost the game by 279 runs.
Earlier today, in another Twitter post, New Zealand Cricket (NZC) had said that Kane Williamson was expected to return back from Tauranga to rejoin the Black Caps Test squad in Wellington.
“Kane Williamson will return from Tauranga later today to rejoin the BLACKCAPS Test squad in Wellington. Coach Gary Stead has spoken with the captain and is confident he will be available to play in the second Test starting at the Basin Reserve on Friday,” NZC had said.
Williamson scored a career-high 251 in the first test of the two-match series to steer New Zealand to a win by an innings and 134 runs. The 30-year-old has recently joined Virat Kohli at the 2nd spot in ICC Test rankings for batsmen.
The second and final Test match of the series is set to kick start from Friday (December 11).