`Uncapped` Blundell replaces injured Ronchi for Chappell-Hadlee ODI series

| Updated: Jan 21, 2017 17:45 IST

Wellington [New Zealand], Jan.21 (ANI): Uncapped wicketkeeper-batsman Tom Blundell has been included in the 14-man ODI squad for the Chappell-Hadlee series against Australia beginning January 30 at Eden Park in Auckland. The 26-year-old has been called in as a replacement for Luke Ronchi, who is recuperating after suffering a tear to his right adductor during his side's 47-run win against Bangladesh in the second T20 at Bay Oval earlier this month. Reflecting on Blundell's inclusion, New Zealand selector Gavin Larsen stressed Blundell was their "frontline" option, with opener Tom Latham also being considered as a way of incorporating an extra batsman or bowler. "It's hard to replace the experience that Luke brings. But it's good Tom Blundell got a small taste of the environment during the Twenty20 series against Bangladesh and this will be another opportunity for him in the squad," ESPNcricinfo quoted Larsen as saying. "Having Tom Latham as an option gives the squad flexibility and allows us the chance to play an extra bowling option. He's done it before for us, but we'll look to give Tom [Latham] an opportunity to have a game with the gloves in the Ford Trophy before the opening match," he added. Blundell was earlier named in the national squad for the third T20I against Bangladesh after Ronchi got injured.However, he didn't get the chance to bat in that match. Veteran batsman Ross Taylor, who was left out for the successful three-match T20 series against Bangladesh, has been recalled to the squad in place of Jeetan Patel who was picked for the third ODI against the Mashrafe Mortaza-led side. While Corey Anderson has also been dropped for the upcoming ODI series, Ben Wheeler, Adam Milne, Mitchell McClenaghan and Doug Bracewell were all not considered for selection due to their respective injuries. New Zealand squad for first two ODIs against Australia is as follows: Kane Williamson (capt), Tom Blundell (wk), Trent Boult, Neil Broom, Colin de Grandhomme, Lockie Ferguson, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Tom Latham (wk), Colin Munro, Jimmy Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor.(ANI)
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