NZ’s Blundell ruled out of Pakistan ODIs, Mitchell joins squad


Rawalpindi: New Zealand wicketkeeper-batter Tom Blundell will miss the one-day series against Pakistan due to a left quad strain, Kiwis’ management said ahead of Friday’s series opener in Rawalpindi.

All-rounder Daryl Mitchell, who was initially picked for the T20Is against Pakistan, will join the one-day squad ahead of the second match after completing his mandatory isolation in Rawalpindi.

“Obviously everyone is gutted for Tom, he’s a quality player with a diverse skill-set,” stand-in coach Glenn Pocknall said in a team statement on Thursday. “He’ll remain with the squad and we’re hopeful he’ll be available again for the T20I series.

“With Tom out, we do lose our first choice back-up wicket-keeping option. However, there are several guys in the squad with keeping experience and we’ll ensure they do the necessary work at training to be up to speed if called upon.”

Blundell sustained the injury during their 3-2 T20 series defeat in Bangladesh.

“The injury is not quite where we want it so we think it’s best for him to concentrate on his rehab given the big summer of cricket ahead,” physio Nishil Shah said.

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