Christchurch, Oct 9 (UiTV/IANS) – New Zealand fast bowler Lockie Ferguson could likely miss the entire Tri-series at home ahead of the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia as New Zealand Cricket (NZC) want to give him as much time as possible to recover from an abdominal injury.
The Black Caps did not risk the 31-year-old quick in the match against Pakistan on Saturday and coach Gary Stead said managing Ferguson’s injury was a priority going into the T20 World Cup.
Ferguson was also absent from last year’s World Cup in the UAE with a calf injury and New Zealand are making it doubly sure he doesn’t get sidelined again.
“Lockie has a little ab injury at the moment,” head coach John Stead was quoted as saying by The Cricketer. “We’re just managing just that and the most important thing is we get to the start of the World Cup and Lockie is ready to go,” Stead said.
“He’s a very, very important cog in our bowling line-up. Unfortunately for him, he missed last year’s World Cup with the injury he had then.
“I mean we are mindful of it and we want to make sure that he’s right and ready for those early games in the World Cup,” said Stead, adding, “There is that chance (of missing the whole tri-series). We will just see how he responds to treatment over the next few days.”
New Zealand already have a long injury list with Daryl Mitchell suffering a fractured finger in the nets on October 7. Dane Cleaver has come in as a replacement for him for the Tri-series also involving Bangladesh. However, the medical staff is confident of Mitchell’s full recovery in time for New Zealand’s opening game against Australia on October 22.
“Obviously, not ideal timing but we’ve got some good news around where the fracture is in the hand and the time frame to be ready for the first game in Australia in a couple of weeks’ time,” Mitchell told Spark Sport. “We’ll do everything we can to try and be ready and fingers crossed that I’ll be good to go.”