Fast bowler Lockie Ferguson, all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme and left-arm spinner Ajaz Patel are still causing some injury worries for New Zealand’s cricket team, selector Gavin Larsen has said.
De Grandhomme and Ferguson have been ruled out of the Twenty20 series against Pakistan that starts next week in Auckland, while the all-rounder is doubtful for the Test series that follows.
Ferguson’s injury appears to be the most troubling, with Larsen confirming that scans on Friday had revealed a stress fracture in his back.
“I’m gutted for Lockie,” Larsen told reporters at the Basin Reserve on Saturday. “He has an X-factor with the pace at which he bowls. He has grown his role ... and is a pivotal member of our bowling lineup in Twenty20 cricket. This is a major setback, but we will keep our fingers crossed that when the prognosis comes through that we’re talking weeks not months.”
De Grandhomme was ruled out of the ongoing series against West Indies with a foot injury and was unlikely to be risked for the Pakistan series, while Patel was still battling with a calf strain.
Larsen said de Grandhomme will likely be out beyond the Pakistan Test matches. “The last thing we want is to put him back on the park and he’s not quite ready and we lose him for the season.”
Patel, however, may come into consideration if he can get through a New Zealand ‘A’ match next week in Whangarei, Larsen said. “Ajaz is tracking well. Bowling is not an issue, but with a calf it’s the explosive work needed while fielding, sharp turning that is more of a concern at this stage. We’d like to think he gets through some good work up there then we can chuck him back into consideration for the Boxing Day Test.”