Neesham, Blundell, Bennett to face Australia

Wellington Firebirds Jimmy Neesham, Tom Blundell and Hamish Bennett have been named in a New Zealand XI squad named to face an Australian XI in Brisbane early next month.

Neesham and Blundell, who were selected in the BLACKCAPS World Cup squad last week, are joined by Bennett, along with a handful of other players vying to be considered as back-up options for the World Cup.

Tom Latham will captain the side for three 50-over matches on May 5, 7 and 9.

Selector Gavin Larsen said the games would provide a valuable opportunity for the squad.

“It’s an exciting challenge ahead of this group who I know will relish the chance to take on the Australians at home,” Larsen said.

With nine World Cup squad members currently at the IPL and Ross Taylor set to play one-day county cricket in England before the tournament, the games are an exciting opportunity for those players who missed out on World Cup selection.

“The matches will be a stern test and provide quality preparation for those players bound for England and a great opportunity for the rest of the squad to show their wares.

“Every player in the squad, apart from Will Young, has played for the BLACKCAPS and we’re backing them to give a good account of themselves.”


New Zealand XI 

Tom Latham (c)

Todd Astle

Hamish Bennett

Tom Blundell (wk)

Doug Bracewell

Matt Henry

Daryl Mitchell

Jimmy Neesham

Henry Nicholls

Hamish Rutherford

Blair Tickner

George Worker

Will Young


*Tim Seifert, Adam Milne and Corey Anderson were not considered due to injury.