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New Zealand announce 13-man squad for T20I series against Australia

Kane Williamson will lead New Zealand.
Kane Williamson will lead New Zealand.
ANALYST
Modified 14 Feb 2021
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New Zealand Cricket announced their 13-man squad for the upcoming five-match T20I series against Australia, starting on February 22.

Kane Williamson will lead the Blackcaps. Experienced opener Martin Guptill has also been named in the squad despite struggling with a hamstring injury.

With a cloud of uncertainty regarding Guptill's fitness, the Blackcaps selector have named 21-year-old Finn Allenn on standby for the opener.

Selector Gavin Larsen spoke about the decision surrounding Martin Guptill and said:

"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."

Finn Allen starred with the bat in the recently concluded Super Smash League - New Zealand's domestic T20 competition.

The 21-year-old emerged as the top scorer, amassing 512 runs and guiding the Wellington Birds to back-to-back titles.

New Zealand pick Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner as the two main spinners

Ish Sodhi (L) & Mitchell Santner (R) in a training session
Ish Sodhi (L) & Mitchell Santner (R) in a training session
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Experienced campaigners like Tim Southee and Trent Boult made the cut. Fast bowler Kyle Jamieson, who has taken international cricket by storm, is also on the roster.

In the spin department, the Kiwis have gone with the tried and tested pair of Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner.

Tim Seifert will don the wicketkeeping gloves. The 26-year-old starred in New Zealand's last three-match T20I series against Pakistan, where he won the Man of the Series for scoring 176 runs. The Kiwis won that series 2-1.

New Zealand have seemingly picked their best squad possible, but Australia will be missing a few of their stars.

Steve Smith, David Warner, Mitchell Starc and Patrick Cummins have not traveled with the team. Will it affect Australia's chances in the five-match T20 series? We will find out soon.

NEW ZEALAND T20 SQUAD TO FACE AUSTRALIA: 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, Finn Allenn (On Standby)

Published 14 Feb 2021, 09:43 IST
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