Vettori return excites McCullum

2014-11-25 14:57
Brendon McCullum (AFP)

Sharjah - New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum is excited at the prospect of veteran left-arm spinner Daniel Vettori's return to Test cricket in the third and final Test against Pakistan in Sharjah on Wednesday.

The 35-year-old spinner was surprisingly added to the Test squad to bolster New Zealand's chances of levelling the series they trail 1-0 after losing the first Test and drawing the second.

Vettori played last of his 112 Tests (111 for New Zealand and one for ICC World XI) in July 2012 and had all but ended his Test career due to persistent injury problems.

McCullum said it would be an achevement for Vettori to become the most-capped New Zealand player.

"We are really excited about his return," McCullum said Tuesday. "He is the most capped player with Stephen Fleming and it is a tremendous achievement over which all are proud off."

Vettori will overtake Fleming who also played 111 Tests for New Zealand.

McCullum said Vettori will also be part of the one-day series which follows the Test.

"It is a one-off Test situation for him as he was over here preparing for the one-dayers.

"We think using three spinners and Dane being the third one, the workload might not be overly excessive. With the World Cup around we don't want to break him in a one-off Test match situation and we think we can certainly manage," said McCullum.

Vettor will replace out of form all-rounder Jimmy Neesham from the second Test XI with the other two spinners - Ish Sodhi and Mark Craig - retained.

This will be the sixth time New Zealand enter a Test with three spinners in the last 30 years, losing five of those Tests and drawing one.

McCullum said the plan to play Vettori was well debated.

"We spoked to Dane earlier in the tour. The wickets over here are so suited to spin bowling. So considering the fact it has been very hard on the bowlers, we looked at perhaps the balance of the team and we decided that a spinning all-rounder will also be handy at No.6 position.

"After seeing how fit and strong he is, which is another important point because his fitness is at a level where he feels comfortable he can operate in this Test match, and obviously the enthusiasm which he brings to the group and experience as well is great."

McCullum added: "Dane is an optimist as well and he is excited about the opportunity and I am sure he will be a bit nervous as it is couple of years since he donned the black cap but he is a wonderful player.

"Even if it's maybe his last one and it will be great fun to play and go out on his terms and rather than slide out of his wonderful Test career."

Read more on:    brendon mccullum  |  cricket

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Under fire Proteas coach Russell Domingo has blamed player workloads and fatigue as the reason for the national team's woeful showing in the Tri Series in the Caribbean. Your thoughts?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.