Christchurch: New Zealand on Friday included rookie Paul Hitchcock in its squad for the West Indies tour in June and July - its first outing since fleeing Pakistan after a bomb exploded outside the team hotel.
Hitchcock, a medium pace bowler, and spinner Matthew Hart are the only new names and were selected for the five One-dayers starting on June 5 in Jamaica. Chairman of national selectors Sir Richard Hadlee said Hitchcock was brought into the side after Andre Adams was ruled out through injury. "Paul has been bowling extremely well over the last couple of years and was the leading wicket taker in the State Shield this year with 22 wickets at an average of 14.5," Hadlee said. "Paul now gets his chance to prove to us that he can perform at the top level and convince us that he should be in our considerations for the World Cup next year." Hart, who last played for New Zealand in the 1999 World Cup, replaces Brooke Walker. "We have yet to settle on a second spin bowling option and we will be looking to Matthew to play a significant role to help balance the workload of Daniel Vettori," Hadlee said. "Matthew has been a very consistent performer of late and was a standout in the State Shield this year taking 15 wickets at a miserly average of 10.6." The three players who were under an injury cloud, Shane Bond (foot), Nathan Astle (knee) and Jacob Oram (side strain) all came through fitness tests and have been selected. The One-day squad leaves for Jamaica on Tuesday. One-day squad: Stephen Fleming (captain), Nathan Astle, Shane Bond, Ian Butler, Chris Harris, Matthew Hart, Matt Horne, Paul Hitchcock, Craig McMillan, Chris Nevin, Jacob Oram, Daryl Tuffey, Scott Styris, Daniel Vettori and Lou Vincent. Test squad: Stephen Fleming (captain), Nathan Astle, Shane Bond, Ian Butler, Chris Harris, Robbie Hart, Matt Horne, Craig McMillan, Chris Martin, Mark Richardson, Daryl Tuffey, Daniel Vettori and Lou Vincent (One to be added).
Thatsspecial: India's Caribbean Adventure