Black Caps pick uncapped Woodcock in World Cup squad

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

WELLINGTON - New Zealand has picked uncapped spinner Luke Woodcock and fast bowler Hamish Bennett in the 15-man World Cup squad named today.

Convener of selectors Mark Greatbatch said 23-year-old Bennett returns from a groin injury after making his ODI debut in Bangladesh last year.

Other points of interest include the return from knee surgery of experienced allrounder Jacob Oram and the lack of a specialist backup wicketkeeper to Brendon McCullum.

Top order batsman Jamie Howe retains his place in the squad from the 5-0 ODI series defeat in India, reports.

Notable omissions are allrounder Grant Elliott; fast bowler Andy McKay who lost out to Bennett; Canterbury batsman Rob Nicol, and gloveman Peter McGlashan who appeared a good bet as McCullum’s backup.

“The squad has an experienced core with James Franklin, Brendon McCullum, Jacob Oram, Scott Styris, Ross Taylor and Daniel Vettori all taking part in the 2007 World Cup,” Greatbatch said.

Woodcock, 28, was a standout bowler in the domestic Twenty20 competition and made his international T20 debut against Pakistan in Hamilton, taking 0-20 off four overs.

He continued his excellent form in the domestic one-day competition, with a double of 50 off 49 balls and 3-31 against Northern Districts on Sunday, then today took 4-40 against Canterbury.

“Luke has worked hard for his chance after forging an impressive record with Wellington over a number of years. He has a good head on his shoulders and his selection provides the option of playing three spinners which could be useful on the subcontinent,” Greatbatch said.

New Zealand World Cup squad: Daniel Vettori (captain), Brendon McCullum, Jesse Ryder, Jamie How, Martin Guptill, Ross Taylor, Scott Styris, Kane Williamson, James Franklin, Jacob Oram, Nathan McCullum, Luke Woodcock, Kyle Mills, Tim Southee, Hamish Bennett. (ANI)

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