The Wellington Firebirds have selected a new-look squad for their opening two rounds of the Ford Trophy against Canterbury this weekend.
With a host of regular faces unavailable assistant coach Lance Dry has brought in several new names who will make their first appearances of the summer in the Wellington shirt.
That means call ups for newly contracted Firebird Troy Johnson and brother Brett, young opener Jakob Bhula, as well as seamers Michael Snedden, Adam Leonard and James Hartshorn.
The Firebirds will be without the services of a host of international talent, including Tom Blundell, Devon Conway, Hamish Bennett, and Jimmy Neesham who are all part of the BLACKCAPS T20 or Test squads, as well as Rachin Ravindra and Ben Sears who are on New Zealand A duty.
Logan van Beek and Ollie Newton are also unavailable due to injury.
Dry, who has taken over the head coach reins in the absence of Glenn Pocknall who is away with the New Zealand A squad against West Indies, said it was an exciting opportunity to blood further depth in the Firebirds ranks.
“We’re really excited to be switching into white ball cricket after a challenging start in the red ball arena,” he said.
“We have a very strong Wellington presence in the current international sides which opens up a great opportunity for our younger, local guys who we know will step up to the challenge well.”
“There’s a really strong core of local Wellington guys in the squad which is really pleasing and we’re looking to go out and get off to a strong start in the one-day competition.”
Ten of the thirteen strong squad have come through the Cricket Wellington pathway system, including bowler Iain McPeake who had the best bowling average of any player in last year’s Ford Trophy of 16.6.
The Firebirds have won the last four of their Ford Trophy matches against Canterbury, a feat they will be looking to extend tomorrow.
Play gets underway from 11.00am at Hagley Oval in Christchurch tomorrow – spectator entry is free.
Wellington Firebirds squad | Ford Trophy | Round One & Two Michael Bracewell (c)Jakob BhulaFraser ColsonAndrew FletcherJamie GibsonJames HartshornAdam LeonardLauchie Johns (wk)Brett JohnsonTroy JohnsonIain McPeakeMichael SneddenPeter Younghusband
Article added: Saturday 28 November 2020