BLACKCAPS squad for Sri Lanka Test announced

BLACKCAPS coach John Bracewell today announced the BLACKCAPS squad for the first Test against Sri Lanka at Jade Stadium, Christchurch, starting on Thursday 7 December.

The squad is: Stephen Fleming (captain), Nathan Astle, Shane Bond, Craig Cumming, James Franklin, Jamie How, Chris Martin, Michael Mason, Brendon McCullum, Iain O'Brien, Jacob Oram, Mathew Sinclair, Daniel Vettori.

One player will be released from the squad on Wednesday.

Craig Cumming and Mathew Sinclair return to Test cricket with the naming of the BLACKCAPS squad today.

"Form and continuity of selection are the key reasons behind the selection of our three top order batsmen for the Sri Lankan Test. Jamie How is the incumbent and Sinclair and Cumming have been the form batsmen, with Cumming getting three half-centuries and Sinclair a century," Bracewell said.

"In Sinclair's case, it is a continuation of the runs he scored last season and Cumming has had Test experience. In the end, it came down to a sheer weight of runs compared with the other possible candidates.

"Both O'Brien and Mason are returning from injury. O'Brien has been the form bowler, especially his performances on very good batting strips, and Mason's efforts have been very encouraging.

"We are rewarding guys who have been successful in the early rounds of the domestic competition."

Kyle Mills, Scott Styris and Michael Papps were not considered because of injury. Mills has been unable to complete his present match with a patella tendon injury.

He will be assessed by medical staff on Monday.

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For further information, please contact John Durning, BLACKCAPS media manager on 021 888 287

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