Cricket: Blackcaps book in Boxing Day test as part of extended tour of Australia

The Blackcaps will head to Australia for a blockbuster four-test tour during the summer of 2026/27.

NZ Cricket has extended the original agreement from three tests to four, as part of the ICC Future Tours Programme.

One of those will be the iconic Boxing Day fixture at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, which was part the Blackcaps schedule during their last trip across the Tasman in 2019, when they were swept 3-0.

Adelaide, Sydney, and Perth are the other likely host cities.

"Incredibly exciting for both fans and the players," said NZ Cricket chief executive Scott Weenink.

"It's like the Mt Everest of test cricket. I still recall watching Sir Richard Hadlee and Danny Morrison trying to bowl Australia out in a Boxing Day test in 1985."

Blackcaps test captain Tim Southee describes the opportunity as "great news", admitting it may prove attractive enough for the 34-year-old to stave off retirement.

Neil Wagner.
Neil Wagner. Photo credit: Getty Images

"I know the result in the last one wasn't what we were after, but just to be there and experience a Boxing Day test at the MCG was very special for all of those guys who were a part of it," said Southee.

"There's obviously a lot of water to go under the bridge between now and then, but I'd love to be a part of that."

In March, New Zealand will host the reigning world test champions for a two-test tour at Wellington and Chistchurch - their first visit to Aotearoa for red-ball action since 2016. They'll also play three Twenty20 internationals.

The Blackcaps haven't played a four-test series since 1999, when they beat England 2-1.

Watch live, free-to-air coverage of the first test between the Blackcaps and Bangladesh on ThreeNow from 4pm, Tuesday or follow along via our live updates