Michael Bracewell

Michael Bracewell ruled out of ODI World Cup 2023

New Zealand’s premier all-rounder Michael Bracewell has ruptured his Achilles which has ruled him out of the ODI Cricket World Cup happening in October. The injury was caused during a T20 Blast game in England and has sidelined him for six to eight months.

Bracewell has performed exceptionally for the Kiwis in the recent past. The left-hander has featured in 19 ODIs with 510 runs at an average of 42.50 while predominantly batting at No.6 and 7. The southpaw got major appreciation for his outstanding hundred against India this year where he smashed a 78-ball 140 – including 12 fours and 10 sixes – in chase of the home team’s 349/8.

SS Ton Cricket Bat

Bracewell’s injury is a major blow to New Zealand’s plans for the 2023 ODI Cricket World Cup. The Black Caps will also be without the services of their talismanic skipper Kane Williamson who is nursing a leg injury.

Upon knowing the news of the injury, New Zealand head coach Gary Stead said: “Firstly, you always feel for the player when injury strikes and especially when it means they will have to miss a world event.”

He further said, “Michael’s a great team man and has had a fantastic 15 months for New Zealand since his international debut. We’ve seen his exceptional skills in all three facets of the game and he was shaping as an important player for us at the world cup in India.”

Bracewell will now undergo surgery in the UK and then fly to his hometown for rehabilitation.

Mark Chapman

Mark Chapman added to the ODI squad for series against Pakistan

Mark Chapman has been rewarded for his stellar performances in the recently held T20I series against Pakistan. The left-hander has been added to the ODI squad for the upcoming series against Pakistan that begins in Rawalpindi on Thursday.

Chapman was in stellar form in the T20I series scoring 290 runs in five games. His runs tally is the most by any player in a five-match T20I series. After scoring two half-centuries, the southpaw brought his best form in the final T20I; scoring an unbeaten 57-ball 104.

New Zealand head coach Gary Stead was all praise for Chapman. In a post-match interview, he said, “The way Mark’s played against one of the best T20 bowling attacks in the world has been nothing short of outstanding.” He further stated, “His match-winning knock in the fifth and deciding match was particularly special and we’re happy to have someone in such strong form added to our ODI squad.

Chapman has played seven ODIs so far, of which two have been for Hong Kong. He played his first ODI for New Zealand in 2018 and last played in the format in July 2022, when he scored a match-winning 101* against Scotland.

The Black Caps tour party will expand to 16 with the addition of Chapman and new arrivals Tom Blundell and Henry Nicholls, while T20 squad member Dane Cleaver is returning home to New Zealand as planned.

New Zealand ODI squad (updated): Tom Latham (capt), Tom Blundell, Chad Bowes, Mark Chapman, Matt Henry, Ben Lister, Cole McConchie, Adam Milne, Daryl Mitchell, Jimmy Neesham, Henry Nicholls, Rachin Ravindra, Henry Shipley, Ish Sodhi, Blair Tickner, Will Young

Kane Williamson steps down as New Zealand’s Test captain

Kane Williamson has stepped down as New Zealand’s Test captain after six years in charge. The Kiwi batter will be replaced by Tim Southee for the upcoming tour of Pakistan.

“Captaining the BLACKCAPS in Test cricket has been an incredibly special honour,” Williamson said. “For me, Test cricket is the pinnacle of the game, and I’ve enjoyed the challenges of leading the side in the format.

“Captaincy comes with an increased workload on and off the field, and at this stage of my career, I feel the time is right for this decision. After discussions with NZC, we felt that continuing to captain the white-ball formats was preferable with two World Cups in the next two years,” Williamson added.

After taking over from Brendon McCullum in 2016, Williamson led New Zealand in 40 Tests: winning 22, losing ten and drawing eight games. He averaged 57 and scored 11 hundred as captain, both of which are records for New Zealand. New Zealand enjoyed some of the best moments in Test cricket under the leadership of Williamson. They reached the top of the Test rankings in 2021 before beating India in the final of the inaugural ICC Test Championship in June of that year.

NZC CEO David White congratulated Williamson on the way he’s led the Test side. He said, “Kane is one of our all-time greats and our priority is to ensure he enjoys his cricket and plays for New Zealand for as long as possible.

BLACKCAPS coach Gary Stead said Williamson had been a fine Test captain.

“Kane’s guided the Test team through an immensely successful period which is a testament to his ability to bring people together and work towards a common goal,” he said. He further added, “We hope by lessening his workload, we can continue to see the best of Kane Williamson for longer on the international stage, and we know he will remain a key leader in this group.”

Williamson hands over the captaincy to Tim Southee, who will become New Zealand’s 31st Test captain when they play the first Test against Pakistan in Karachi. Tom Latham, another vital player in New Zealand, will act as a deputy to Southee.

Williamson will still lead the team in ODIs and T20s.

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