There's a familiar look to the Black Caps test squad to play Sri Lanka in the two match series this month. All 12 players named by Black Caps Coach Mike Hesson were part of the squad in the recent tour of Australia, including Adelaide debutant Mitchell Santner. Santner performed well with both bat and ball in his opening test and Hesson said he thoroughly deserved the opportunity to continue showing his skills during the home summer.
The level of composure Mitchell showed on debut was very impressive and he certainly displayed how exciting a player he is with both the bat and ball.
"His ability to bat in the top six and bowl good overs gives us options and assists the team balance. We're looking forward to watching Mitchell's continued development." Hesson said Wagner had earned his way into the 12 and also showed confidence in Mark Craig and Martin Guptill to perform in the upcoming series. "Neil impressed in Australia and not only showed that he'll run in hard all day, but was swinging the ball again.
"Mark and Martin didn't perform to the level they would have liked over in Australia, but both have shown in the past what they're capable of and we're confident they'll make valuable contributions in the upcoming series. "We think it's a strong squad, but equally we've got a group of players on the fringe of selection who are ready to be called upon if necessary.
All-rounders Corey Anderson and Jimmy Neesham were not available for selection due to fitness, while Matt Henry, Luke Ronchi and Hamish Rutherford will return to their domestic sides. Wagner was also named in the President's XI to face Sri Lanka in a warm-up match in Queenstown beginning on Thursday, alongside a predominantly youthful side captained by Canterbury's Ryan McCone.
New Zealand squad - Brendon McCullum(c), Trent Boult, Doug Bracewell, Mark Craig, Martin Guptill, Tom Latham, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJWatling, Kane Williamson.
Source - NZ Herald