Despite a knee injury sustained during the IPL, Kane Williamson remains a crucial part of New Zealand’s 15-member squad for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup. However, in a bid to ensure his complete recovery, the team management has decided that Williamson will sit out the Blackcaps’ inaugural tournament match against England on October 5 in Ahmedabad.
Williamson’s Role in Warm-Up Matches
Williamson is set to participate as a batter-only in New Zealand’s preparatory match against Pakistan in Hyderabad today. He also plans to bat and field in the second warm-up game against South Africa in Thiruvananthapuram. Nevertheless, the New Zealand team is taking a cautious approach with their star player, aiming to ensure his full-fledged return to the field sooner rather than later.
Coach’s Comments on Williamson’s Recovery
Discussing Williamson’s fitness, head coach Gary Stead stated, “We’ve adopted a long-term perspective on Kane’s return to play right from the outset. His recovery is progressing well, and the focus now is to ensure he can withstand the demands and intensity of international cricket.”
Stead further added, “We’ll continue to monitor Kane’s rehabilitation on a day-to-day basis and certainly won’t rush his return before he is fully ready.”
Leadership in Williamson’s Absence
In the absence of Williamson, wicketkeeper-batter Tom Latham will take the reins and lead the side.