Blackcaps v India: Mitchell Santner dropped from NZ test squad

  • 17/02/2020

All-rounder Mitchell Santner has been dropped from the Blackcaps squad for the two-test series against India.

After scoring a debut century against England with the bat, the left-arm spinner had a poor series against Australia and has been replaced in the 13-man squad by specialist spinner Ajaz Patel.

Auckland quick bowler Kyle Jamieson is in line for his test debut, after impressing in the one-day series.

Trent Boult returns from a broken hand, joining fellow fast-bowling regulars Tim Southee and Neil Wagner.

"It’s terrific to have Trent back with us," said cocach Gary Stead. "And we’re looking forward to the energy and experience he adds to the group, alongside his obvious class with the ball in hand.

"Kyle will offer us a point of difference with the bounce he could extract on what is traditionally a good surface in Wellington."

Darryl Mitchell's been brought in as the batting cover, ahead of the likes of Glenn Phillips and Will Young, who've both missed out.

"Daryl showed his batting prowess in his test debut against England in Hamilton and he naturally offers us great versatility with the different roles he can play."

Stead admitted some tough selection decisions had to be made.

"With a squad of 13, we've put a priority on balance, and making sure we have the needed variety and different options, depending on the pitch conditions at the Basin Reserve.

Tom Blundell will continue to open the batting with Tom Latham, after his breakthough century in the Boxing Day test against Australia in Melbourne.

Veteran batsman Ross Taylor will notch another significant career milestone, becoming just the fourth New Zealand player to play 100 tests, joining former teammates Brendon McCullum, Daniel Vettori and Stephen Fleming.

The first test against India starts in Wellington on Friday.

Blackcaps test squad v India: Kane Williamson (captain), Tom Latham, Tom Blundell, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling, Colin de Grandhomme, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, Trent Boult, Ajaz Patel, Kyle Jamieson, Daryl Mitchell.