As New Zealand gears up for their encounter with Bangladesh at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai this Friday, the team’s captain, Kane Williamson, addressed the media, hinting at his imminent return to the field.
Williamson’s Road to Recovery
With 161 ODIs under his belt, Williamson shared his journey towards regaining match fitness. He expressed his eagerness to join his teammates, who have already started their campaign with two resounding victories.
“The journey has been largely positive with significant progress. I am thrilled to be part of the World Cup squad and excited about the upcoming challenge,” said Williamson. He further added, “A new venue, new opposition, as is always the case in world events. We are ready for the challenge.”
A Remarkable Comeback
If Williamson makes an appearance in the tournament, it will mark an incredible comeback for the 33-year-old. He suffered an anterior cruciate ligament tear during the IPL just six months ago. Despite missing the first two matches against England and the Netherlands, Williamson did participate in New Zealand’s World Cup warm-up matches against Pakistan and South Africa.
Discussing his recovery, Williamson said, “It started with strengthening the knee and gradually improving its range and control. Each week of rehab has been crucial and valuable. I am looking forward to tomorrow.”
Team News and Expectations
On the team front, Williamson confirmed that Tim Southee, who injured his hand during their England tour last month, is still not available for selection. The 34-year-old fast bowler fractured his thumb during the series and will sit out despite making good progress, according to his captain.
A victory over Bangladesh on Friday would catapult New Zealand to the top of the Cricket World Cup 2023 table, following their comfortable wins over England and the Netherlands.