New Zealand recently lost the 3-Test vs Australia  © Getty Images
New Zealand recently lost the 3-Test vs Australia © Getty Images

New Zealand announced 12-man squad for their upcoming home Test series against Sri Lanka. The side included all the players but Matt Henry, Hamish Rutherford and Luke Ronchi, who recently featured in the three-Test series against Australia Down Under. The three of them will return to their respective domestic sides as the others do national duty in Dunedin and Hamilton. Mitchell Santner, who made his debut in the first-ever day-night Test at Adelaide with scores of 31 and 45 and two wickets, was retained for the two-Test series against the Lankans. Australia defeated the visitors in the pink ball Test inside three days by three wickets. READ: Martin Guptill’s inability to carry ODI form into Tests hurting New Zealand

According to Wisden India, Black Caps coach Mike Hesson said, “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.”

Neil Wagner who did not get a game in Australia was called as a replacement for injured Tim Southee. He was retained as the fourth pacer in the squad for the Sri Lanka series, while Mark Craig and Martin Guptill, who struggled in Australia, also held their respective positions in the Test side.

“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,” Hesson added. READ: Steven Smith, Brendon McCullum praise success of day-night Test cricket

“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,” he said.

12-man squad:

New Zealand: Brendon McCullum (c), Trent Boult, Doug Bracewell, Mark Craig, Martin Guptill, Tom Latham, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling (wk), Kane Williamson.