Ross Taylor will return to New Zealand’s squad for two Tests against a visiting Bangladesh side after recovering from eye surgery, a New Zealand Cricket release said on Thursday (January 5).
Taylor, who got a pterygium growth removed in his left eye after he posted his 16th Test century against Pakistan at Hamilton in November, was not available for the three-match Chappell-Hadlee Trophy in Australia and the three One-Day Internationals against Bangladesh at home.
Taylor was not even included in the Twenty20 International squad, with an earlier NZC release citing a “minor side strain” for his non-availability.
Taylor’s inclusion meant a familiar look to the squad with 12 of the 13 named having featured in the 2-0 series victory over Pakistan. Henry Nicholls is the only addition.
The series begins with the first of two games starting on January 12 in Wellington.
“It’s great to have Ross back. He has a phenomenal record that speaks for itself and he’s coming off a terrific hundred in his last Test,” said Gavin Larsen, the selector, of Taylor, who returned to cricket with scores of 82 not out and 80 for Central Districts in the domestic league.
“He’s obviously been an essential part of our Test side for a long time and brings invaluable experience and knowledge to the group.”
Dean Brownlie, who was called on for the second Test against Pakistan as cover for Taylor, will retain his spot in the squad. Mitchell Santner, the left-arm spinner, is the only full-time tweaker, while Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Neil Wagner and Matt Henry will vie for a spot in the pace unit.
“We’ve still got some relatively new players in the squad and playing in home conditions gives them a great opportunity to further their experience on the international stage,” said Larsen.
The squad: Kane Williamson (capt), Trent Boult, Dean Brownlie, Colin de Grandhomme, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Jeet Raval, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling (wk).