WTC Final: New Zealand Name 15-Man Squad, Kane Williamson Returns To Lead Against India | Cricket News

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New Zealand on Tuesday named a 15-man squad for the World Test Championship final against India, to be played at The Ageas Bowl in Southampton from June 18. Kane Williamson, who missed the second Test of the recently-concluded series against England, returns to lead the squad as does wicket-keeper batsman BJ Watling. Colin de Grandhomme has been included as a specialist all-rounder while Ajaz Patel is the specialist spinner. All of Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Ross Taylor, and Devon Conway have kept their places while Mitchell Santner and Daryl Mitchell, both of whom played in the England series, miss out.

Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Matt Henry, and Kyle Jamieson make the fast-bowling attack. Will Young is the “specialist batting cover” and Tom Blundell the back-up wicket-keeper, said a media release by New Zealand Cricket (NZC). 

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New Zealand come into the World Test Championship final after having won their first Test series in England since 1999. They beat England by seven wickets in the second Test at Edgbaston and moved to No.1 on the ICC Test rankings. 

Williamson, who sat out of the Edgbaston Test due to an elbow injury, and Watling who sat out with back pain, have “benefitted from their week of rest and rehabilitation” and are expected to be fit for the final, New Zealand coach Gary Stead said. 

Besides Santner and Mitchell, Doug Bracewell, Rachin Ravindra, and Jacob Duffy are the other players to drop out of the 20-man squad picked for England Tests. 

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“Playing in a World Cup Final is a really special occasion and I know the guys are looking forward to getting into their work here in Southampton,” said Stead. 

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“India are a world class outfit who possess match winners all through their line-up, so we’re under no illusion about how tough they will be to beat.” 

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Squad: Kane Williamson (c), Tom Blundell, Trent Boult, Devon Conway, Colin de Grandhomme, Matt Henry, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling, Will Young 

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