Time for Southee to hand new ball to Ferguson

Tim Southee
Tim Southee
What did we learn about the Black Caps during the home series against Sri Lanka? Cricket writer Adrian Seconi takes a look behind the limited-overs clean sweep ahead of India’s arrival and the World Cup later this year.

Same, same

The series felt very familiar after a while. All three ODI's followed the same script. Basically, New Zealand put a massive score on the board, Sri Lanka made early inroads with the bat before eventually falling short.

It would have been nice to see the Black Caps chase 300-plus so we could get a sense of how they would perform under a different kind of pressure. That said, the batting was simply magnificent.

Ross Taylor owned those middle overs and Henry Nicholls' fabulous undefeated century in game three bodes well for the series against India and the World Cup later this year.

Back in the mix

Former Otago all-rounder Jimmy Neesham clouted his way back into everyone's good books. The newly minted Wellingtonian was in nice touch towards the end of last season but his batting has gone to another level this summer.

He always had power, but the five sixes he hit in one over was something else. He bowled pretty well during the series as well and has probably moved ahead of Colin de Grandhomme in the pecking order.

But can his body hold out? Speaking of injury-prone - Corey Anderson is bowling again.

Gloveman

The selectors were keen to see what Tim Seifert could offer with the bat. He can be a devastating ball-striker but he failed to impress and his glove work was average.

Tom Latham and BJ Watling are superior players but do not have the power game Seifert possesses. But perhaps the only way Seifert makes the top line-up would be as a pinch hitter at the top of the order.

Colin Munro has struggled in the one-day format at international level but is the sort of player worth persisting with for those days when he does get it right.

A new new ball bowler

It is time. Tim Southee and Trent Boult did not have the impact we have come to expect from them at the top of the order. Boult looked tired. If anyone needed a rest during the series, it was him.

And Southee, well, he bowled a lot of trash. Who else is sick of watching Southee's yorkers - read knee high full tosses - disappear over the rope for six?

He was easily the worst of the Black Caps bowlers and he should hand over the new ball to Lockie Ferguson. Wellington's Hamish Bennett is the best death bowler in the country. He has a knuckle ball no-one can read, an awkward bouncer and a record which demands closer attention from the selectors. Southee out. Bennett in.

Fielding

Has to be better. Too many dropped catches. Running between the wickets was poor as well. Both areas need some attention.

Bolters

Cannot see the selectors gambling when they name the World Cup squad. But perhaps if they do it will be for Doug Bracewell ahead of Colin de Grandhomme. He impressed during the one-off twenty20 match and no-one will be happier than Ian Smith, who is arguably his greatest fan.

Someone like Scott Kuggeleijn is a rough chance as well. He has express pace and can hit the ball very hard. If that pair is in the reckoning, then they should play during the Indian series so they can be properly assessed.

World Cup squad

Here is the group we think the selectors will name: Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Jimmy Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult, Matt Henry, Colin de Grandhomme, Ish Sodhi, BJ Watling.

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