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NZ vs Pak 2020: Kane Williamson returns as captain of New Zealand

December 23, 2020

Written By,

Payel Gosh

Kane Williamson is now the captain for the New Zealand Test side. New Zealand is set to take on Pakistan in the upcoming Test series at home. The 1st Test will take place at Williamson’s hometown, Mount Maunganui. The Kiwis have also added spinner Mitchell Santner to the Test squad.

Williamson was part of the squad set to face the West Indies in the 2nd Test. This was because he was on leave to attend the birth of his 1st child. Devon Conway will make way for the New Zealand captain Kane Williamson. Will Young will stay part of the batting cover.

Ajaz Patel has been dropped from the squad. Patel was superb against Pakistan in the UAE 2 years back. However, since he is recuperating from a calf injury, the selectors have decided not to risk his selection. Instead, Santner has been brought in.

New Zealand coach Gary Stead stated that it is quite unfortunate for Ajaz to miss out on the Test series. He also stated that Santner opted because Ajaz lacked match practice. Instead, Gary wanted an overall option, which was available in the form of Santner.

An opportunity for the Kiwis to make it to another Lord’s final

New Zealand recently managed to complete a 2-0 whitewash against West Indies in the Test series. With this, the Kiwis are now 3rd in the ICC World Test Championship points table. Furthermore, if India suffers a heavy defeat against Australia in their ongoing Test battle, New Zealand might qualify for the final of the World Test Championship. The final is set to take place at Lord’s cricket ground. This was where New Zealand recently contested the ICC 2019 World Cup final against England.

The struggling Pakistan side will be without the likes of Babar Azam and Imam-ul-Haq in the 1st Test. Both of them fractured their thumbs in a training session at Queensland. Owing to this, Mohammad Rizwan will now captain the "Men in Green" in the upcoming Test Series.

New Zealand, meanwhile, will look to capitalize upon this opportunity. The Kiwis already won the T20I series against Pakistan. The 1st Test is set to start on 26th December. Both the teams will look to win the 1st Test to build up momentum for the 2nd Test.

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Written By,

Payel Gosh