Kiwis focus on spin for Test tour of Bangladesh

New Zealand will place their focus on spin for the upcoming two-Test tour of Bangladesh later this month. This series marks the beginning of the third cycle of the ICC World Test Championship for the Black Caps. The coaching team will be led by Luke Ronchi. Head coach Gary Stead will return home after the ICC World Cup to prepare for their home summer.

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In the series, Luke Ronchi will have the support of specialist bowling coaches Jacob Oram for pace and Saqlain Mushtaq for spin. Daniel Flynn will serve as the batting coach for the first time.

Expecting spin-friendly conditions in Bangladesh, the selectors have made several inclusions in the squad, with white-ball specialists Rachin Ravindra, Kyle Jamieson, and Mitchell Santner returning. They will join forces with experienced spinners Ajaz Patel and Ish Sodhi.

Last seen in Test cricket in 2021 against England at Lord’s, Mitchell Santner has been recalled for the Test tour of Bangladesh. His selection follows a successful Plunket Shield season for Northern Districts in 2022/23, where he took 15 wickets at an average of 26 and averaged 52 with the bat.

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The spin department gains additional strength with the inclusion of off-spinning all-rounders Rachin Ravindra and Glenn Phillips. Ravindra will return to the Test squad after playing against Bangladesh at Bay Oval in January 2022. Glenn Phillips returns to the Test squad after touring Pakistan in December and January.

Kyle Jamieson, who underwent back surgery in February, will return for the Test tour of Bangladesh. He will bolster the three-man pace attack alongside captain Tim Southee and Matt Henry. Pace bowler Jamieson has an impressive record with 72 wickets at an average of 19 in just 16 Tests.

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He became the fastest New Zealander to reach 50 Test wickets, accomplishing this feat in just nine Tests. He was named Player of the Match in the ICC World Test Championship in 2021.

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