New Zealand have announced their T20I squad for the upcoming five-match series against India. Pacer Hamish Bennett has earned a recall to the T20 squad after making his last appearance for New Zealand three years ago. The 32-year old have been included in the 14-member squad which was announced on Wednesday (15th January). Captain Kane Williamson will return to lead the side for this home series.
Due to injuries to frontline bowlers like Trent Boult and Lockie Ferguson, New Zealand selectors decided to bring in Hamish Bennett, who has been an excellent performer in the domestic competition. Besides Boult and Ferguson, Matt Henry, Will Young, Adam Milne and Matt Henry are also not available for selection due to injuries.
Tim Southee, Scott Kuggeleijn and Blair Ticker are prominent pace options for the side for this five-match T20I series. Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner are two main spinners included in the T20I squad. New Zealand Chief selector, Gavin Larsen said that Hamish Bennett has rightfully earned his recall to the national setup. In the recent concluded Super Smash competition, Bennett has claimed 14 wickets in 10 matches at an economy rate of 7.06.
Kane Williamson will resume captaincy duties for this series. He did play the previous T20I series played against England due to hip injury. Tom Bruce will be available final two T20I games of the series, while Colin de Grandhomme will be available for the first three matches.
James Neesham has been overlooked for the T20I series, while Daryl Mitchell has done just enough to retain his place in the T20 squad.
The opening game of the T20I series against India will be played at Eden Park in Auckland on 24th January.
New Zealand T20I Squad: Kane Williamson (captain ), Scott Kuggeleijn, Ross Taylor, Blair Tickner, Tom Bruce, Daryl Mitchell, Colin Munro, Hamish Bennett, Martin Guptill, Mitchell Santner, Tim Seifert, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Colin de Grandhomme.