Worries loom in the New Zealand camp as senior batsman Ross Taylor suffered a calf injury while batting in a training session at the high-performance centre in Lincoln ahead of their departure for England.
The New Zealand side will leave for the UK by mid-May to take on Joe Root’s side for a 2-Test match series which commences on June 2nd, before they play Virat Kohli’s Indian team in the final of the World Test Championship from June 18th at The Rose Bowl, Southampton.
This is the second injury Ross Taylor has suffered in recent time – he missed a couple of home ODIs against Bangladesh due to a hamstring injury.
For the first Test against England, New Zealand will be without regular skipper Kane Williamson, who is made the captain of the Sunrisers Hyderabad, who play their last league match on May 21st – hence considering a 10-day quarantine imposed by the UK government for people coming from India Williamson is nigh-certain to miss the Lord’s Test.
Always have a little bit of a concern with someone of Ross Taylor’s calibre: coach Gary Stead
New Zealand coach, Gary Stead is positive that Ross Taylor will be fit in time and currently they are being “more precautionary” considering the significance of the 37-year-old in the Test side.
Stead hinted that even if there was some doubt over Taylor’s immediate fitness he would likely make the trip.
“The reports I’ve had so far is it’s more precautionary than anything but we’ll see how he scrubs up. You are always worried when any injuries happen but someone of Ross’s standing and calibre as a Test player you always have a little bit of a concern,” Stead told reporters.
“Fingers crossed everything is good and we still have time on our side, but we’ll just have to wait and see what the medical team say. Ross has a great Test record behind and we want him in our team,” he added.
Apart from Williamson, the Black Caps will also be missing Trent Boult, Kyle Jamieson and Mitchell Santner, from the first Test – they could also be unavailable for the second Test in Birmingham from June 10th if their IPL sides qualify for the playoffs.