Sports, Cricket

Williamson remains on sideline for Netherlands Clash

Published : 08 Oct 2023 09:01 PM

Lockie Ferguson and Tim Southee are likely to be fit for New Zealand's second World Cup game against Netherlands having recovered from their respective injuries. However, captain Kane Williamson is likely to spend some more time on the sidelines, head coach Gary Stead has said.

“Lockie Ferguson got through training really well so providing he is scrubbed up okay this morning, he will be available for this next game,” Stead said. “Tim Southee also got through the training really well. It was great to see him back at the bowling crease and also doing a little bit of fielding as well.

“He will just get a final x-ray done this morning and we will make a call after that but it is all looking good for selection from now on and into the rest of the tournament.”

New Zealand have been plagued by injuries coming into the World Cup and effectively had 12 fit players to pick from for their opening picture against England. 

Ferguson missed the game due to a back niggle, while Southee, who had surgery on his fractured right thumb heading into the tournament, failed to recover in time.

Williamson, meanwhile will continue to remain absent from the playing XI as he makes his way back to full fitness from an ACL tear he suffered in the IPL earlier this year. Williamson played the two warm-up games against Pakistan and South Africa, giving a good account of himself, scoring 54 and 37 respectively, before retiring out.

He missed the opening game against England and is now targeting a comeback in New Zealand's third game against Bangladesh on October 13 in Chennai. 

“Kane’s also been progressing very well. I think the fielding is still the element for him that he’s just got to get a little bit higher and get a little more trust in his body,” Stead said.

“But he is progressing really well and we are pretty confident he will be playing the third match for us. We have got another training to get through today so we will finalise the team once we have got through that training. At this stage with Kane, we are looking like the third game is when he will start the tournament.”

New Zealand will next face Netherlands on October 9 in Hyderabad. CAPTION: Kane Williamson is targeting a return in New Zealand third game.