Trent Boult
Trent Boult Credits: Twitter

New Zealand, on Tuesday (February 13), announced their squad for the upcoming three-match series against Australia. The highlight of the squad is the return of fast-bowler Trent Boult.

The left-arm pacer, who declined a central contract from New Zealand Cricket in 2022, has not played a T20I for the Black Caps since the 2022 T20 World Cup. However, he had represented the team in the ODI World Cup last year and the semifinal loss against India in November was his last appearance in international cricket.

He has been included in the New Zealand squad for the second and third T20Is. Both the games are scheduled to be played in Auckland. The veteran pacer will be replacing fellow pacer Tim Southee in the New Zealand squad for the last two games of the series. Southee will play only the first T20I before being rested due to workload management.

New Zealand squad:

The New Zealand squad also features uncapped all-rounder Josh Clarkson and Rachin Ravindra. The hosts will be without two key players for the series – Kane Williamson and Daryl Mitchell. While Williamson will be away on paternity leave, Mitchell is sidelined with a foot injury that recently saw him miss the ongoing second Test against South Africa.

“It’s never ideal missing two of your best players for such a big series, but in saying that, we do have a lot of faith in the guys coming in,” selector Sam Wells said. “Both Josh and Rachin have been in our white-ball squads this summer and it’s really exciting for them to now get this opportunity.

“Josh hits the ball as long and as hard as anyone and we were encouraged by his performances with the ball in his maiden ODI series against Bangladesh before Christmas.

“Rachin’s talent and class has been clear to all over the past six months, and similar to Josh, it’s great to have his all-round skill-set to call on in this squad,” he added.

Left-arm spinner Mitchell Santner will be leading the team against Australia. The three-match series is scheduled to get underway on February 21.

New Zealand squad:

Mitchell Santner (c), Finn Allen, Trent Boult (games 2 & 3), Mark Chapman, Josh Clarkson, Devon Conway (wk), Lockie Ferguson, Matt Henry, Adam Milne, Glenn Phillips, Rachin Ravindra, Tim Seifert (wk), Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee (game 1)