Ahead of ODI debut, Tim Seifert chases 2019 Cricket World Cup spot
Uncapped in ODIs, Tim Seifert is chasing a World Cup spot. © AFP

With the New Zealand selectors on Thursday deciding to rest Tom Latham for the upcoming three-match ODI series versus Sri Lanka, a chance has opened up for wicketkeeper-batsman Tim Seifert  to stake his claim for the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup.

Siefert, 24, has featured in seven T20Is this year and will make his ODI debut in January with New Zealand’s regular wicketkeeper Latham given a break. The Blackcaps will want a second glovesman in England next summer, and Seifert is hopeful of making a mark against Sri Lanka.

“That’s what gets you excited. They normally do take two keepers and if that second keeper can also fit into a batting role, that’s extra pressure you can put on,” he said on Friday. “If we’re in a position where we’re going really well and we need to keep the tempo up, I can do that, but if we’re in trouble and we need to rebuild the innings, I can see myself doing that as well.

“It’s just a matter of keeping on doing what I’ve been doing really, and with the gloves it’s about keeping it tidy, taking the chances that come, and helping [captain] Kane [Williamson] in the field.”

In his most recent appearances for the Blackcaps, Seifert scored 0, 11 and 0 in three T2oIs against Pakistan in the UAE. Since returning home, he made 128 runs in three one-day innings versus India A, including two fifties, and then 46 off 28 balls and 55 off 42 in two Super Smash outings for his state team.

“The New Zealand A series have been awesome, for all the guys involved. It was a good contest and it was good to see where you sat compared to other guys around the world,” said Seifert. “Playing in those conditions in the UAE and then back here against India, it really showed where you sat against some of these next-in-line guys. It’s an awesome thing NZ Cricket are doing now, trying to play more New Zealand A cricket, just for that extra step to narrow the gap between domestic and international.”

The three-match series begins at Bay Oval on January 3. New Zealand are scheduled to play 11 ODIs over the home summer against Sri Lanka, India, and Bangladesh leading into the 2019 World Cup.