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New Zealand selects Henry and Conway for T20 World Cup squad

New Zealand selects Henry and Conway for T20 World Cup squad

Matt Henry is gearing up for his debut in the T20 World Cup after earning a spot in New Zealand Cricket’s formidable 15-man squad. Kane Williamson will once again take the helm as the team’s leader.

Squad: Kane Williamson(c), Finn Allen, Trent Boult, Michael Bracewell, Mark Chapman, Devon Conway, Lockie Ferguson, Matt Henry, Daryl Mitchell, Jimmy Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Rachin Ravindra, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee [Ben Sears – Travelling Reserve]

Henry, currently playing for the Lucknow Super Giants in the Indian Premier League, has featured in only 17 T20Is for NZ. However, his bowling prowess has significantly improved in the format since his return last year following a six-year hiatus.

“Matt has put in exceptional effort to enhance his skills across all aspects of T20 cricket, earning him consideration for selection,” remarked head coach Gary Stead.

With Adam Milne still sidelined due to an ankle injury, Henry clinched a spot in the squad over Ben Sears.

In the fast bowling department, Tim Southee and Trent Boult, veterans of seven and five T20 World Cups respectively, will join forces with Lockie Ferguson alongside Henry.

Despite recovering from a thumb injury, Devon Conway has been included and is expected to take the wicketkeeping duties over Finn Allen. Tim Seifert and Tom Blundell failed to make the final cut.

Michael Bracewell, who led NZ to a 2-2 draw in the recent T20I series in Pakistan, returns to the World Cup squad after a lengthy absence in 2023, including the 50-over World Cup in India.

Jimmy Neesham and Daryl Mitchell will provide all-round options in the pace-bowling department, while Glenn Phillips, Rachin Ravindra, and Mark Chapman offer additional bowling options in anticipation of slow conditions in the Caribbean and the United States.

The spin department will be led by Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi.

Like Henry, Ravindra is set to make his T20 World Cup debut after impressing in the 50-over edition last year with three centuries.

“Rachin has shown remarkable progress over the past year, and it’s exciting to see him continue that trend into the T20 format against Australia,” Stead noted.

Stead’s coaching team includes Luke Ronchi as the batting coach and Jacob Oram as the bowling coach. James Foster will serve as the assistant coach with a focus on fielding, according to NZC.

New Zealand is scheduled to depart for the tournament on May 23, kicking off their campaign against Afghanistan in Guyana on June 7.

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