Veteran pacer Tim Southee has been cleared by doctors to join the New Zealand World Cup squad later this week as he continues to recover from the surgery on his right fractured thumb. Southee will fly to India on Saturday, September 30 and will hope to be available for the side's first games of the World Cup against the Jos Buttler-led England on October 5 at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.
As a precautionary measure, the right-arm tall pacer Kyle Jamieson will also join the World Cup squad as the cover for Southee but will not officially be associated with the squad. It means that Jamieson will neither feature in the first World Cup warm-up fixture against Pakistan on Friday nor on Monday against South Africa.
Southee suffered a terrible blow to his right thumb while trying to attempt a catch in the slip cordon during the fourth ODI against England at Lord's recently. He immediately flew to New Zealand and underwent surgery on the right thumb and has been undergoing rehabilitation ever since. The 34-year-old is one of the most experienced members of the Blackcaps' World Cup squad and his presence during the marquee tournament in India is extremely important for the runner-ups of the previous edition. The skipper of the World Cup squad Kane Williamson also continues to work towards his fitness.
However, despite the injury concerns the Kiwis have done well recently. Though they lost the four-match series versus the Three Lions, they managed to win the recently concluded three-match ODI series against the Litton Das-led Bangladesh 2-0 with several young players stepping up to the occasion and performing to the best of their abilities.
New Zealand's World Cup squad:
Kane Williamson (c), Trent Boult, Mark Chapman, Devon Conway, Lockie Ferguson, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Daryl Mitchell, Jimmy Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Rachin Ravindra, Mitch Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Will Young