Wellington: New Zealand spin bowler Daniel Vettori is heading home after suffering a back injury during the first Test against Zimbabwe in Bulawayo, won by New Zealand.Vettori is to be treated in New Zealand and may rejoin the team for the South African leg of the tour, New Zealand Cricket said in a statement. The injury was similar to one he suffered last summer during a home series against Australia.''At this stage it is believed that the injury to Vettori is muscular, as scans have failed to reveal any sign of a stress fracture,'' NZ Cricket Board said.
Vettori played on in the first Test despite injuring himself while bowling early in the game. He scored 49 in New Zealand's first innings on the side's way to a seven-wicket victory.Off-spin bowler and all-rounder Glen Sulzberger is to replace Vettori. He will join the team for the One-day series against Zimbabwe and the following ICC Knock Out tournament in Kenya.Canterbury all-rounder Chris Harris is also on his way to Zimbabwe as cover for injured New Zealand batsmen Matthew Horne and Craig Spearman. Horne fractured a thumb during fielding practice during the first Test, while Spearman has a troubling knee injury.
An injury cloud also hangs over all-rounder Chris Cairns, who has a knee injury. NZ Cricket said they hoped Cairns would be able to play in the second Test starting in Harare on Tuesday, but they planned to rest himfor the One-day series. (c) Reuters Limited.