Latham to lead second-string side in unofficial ODIs

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Latham will lead a squad of 13 that will tour Australia for the three-match unofficial ODI series in May © Getty

Tom Latham is set to lead a depleted New Zealand side in the upcoming unofficial ODI series against Australia. In a three-match series, to be played in Brisbane as preparation for the World cup, only five of the selected 15-member squad will be participating in the series, which includes 13 players.

Apart from the nine players signed by the various Indian Premier League franchises, Ross Taylor will be busy with his County commitments with Nottinghamshire. Apart from Latham, James Neesham, Henry Nicholls, Matt Henry and Tom Blundell will be the other World cup-bound players who will be playing the One-dayers in Australia.

The players selected in the squad are being viewed as back-ups for those in the World cup 15, in case injury plays a part before or during the course of the tournament. The likes of Time Seifert, Corey Anderson and Adam Milne who are injured, have not been considered.

Doug Bracewell and Todd Astle, both of whom narrowly missed the cut for the world cup, will be playing in the three-match series. The games will be played at the Allan Border Fields, on May 5, 7 and 9.

“It’s an exciting challenge ahead of this group who I know will relish the chance to take on the Australians at home,” Gavin Larsen, New Zealand’s chief selector, said. “The matches will be a stern test and provide quality preparation for those players bound for England and a great opportunity for the rest of the squad to show their wares.”