Cricket: Blackcaps' Trent Boult returns to selection fold for second England test

Blackcaps coach Gary Stead appears to have had a change of heart over Trent Boult's unavailability for the second test against England.

Last week, Stead insisted the paceman would play no part at Edgbaston, after joining the squad late from a return stint to New Zealand to see his family, when the Indian Premier League was suspended indefinitely last month.

But the 31-year-old trained fully with the squad on Saturday and seems likely to be considered for the next test, as the Blackcaps chase their first series win in England since 1999.

"There's a chance [Boult will be selected]," says Stead. "There's a few things that have changed… the British Government has relaxed their quarantine stipulations, so Trent is out of isolation three or four days earlier than we expected.

"We still haven’t made a firm call on that and we will give it the next 48 hours, before we work out what we do with Trent in that second test."

The 30-year-old would create a welcome selection headache for the NZ selectors, as they try to balance the pursuit of a historic test win with keeping key players fresh for the World Test Championship final against India, which begins June 18.

But the second England test could provide the ideal opportunity to ensure Boult - who hasn't played an international since the 50-over win over Bangladesh in late March - gets some valuable match conditioning, with the Indians looming large.

Stead and his fellow selectors may look to field their full complement of pacemen by playing Tim Southee, Jamieson, Wagner and Boult, at the expense of either Colin de Grandhomme or Mitchell Santner.

After his outstanding performance at Lord's, where he took 6/43 in the first innings of the drawn contest, Southee is in line to shoulder a heavy load through the rest of June and Stead is confident he's up to the task.

"I haven't had that conversation yet with Tim," Stead admits. "He bowled 42 overs in the test match and bowled really well.

"He's a workhorse and loves the hard work."

The squad now relocates to Birmingham to prepare to build on their momentum from London, where they gained the upper hand over the hosts through a rain-affected contest.

"Considering it was the first time we've played together as a team for a couple of months, it's always hard when you start on overseas tours to get that first match under your belt," says Stead. 

"Everyone wants us to win and expects us to win, which is great, but doing it overseas is very tough and that day of rain proved out of our reach."