Saturday, 27 November 2021

NZ spinner Astle out of India tour, replaced by Sodhi


SYDNEY: New Zealand leg-spinner Todd Astle’s hopes of finally making his one-day international debut were dashed when he was ruled out of the side’s limited overs tour of India with a groin strain on Thursday. The 31-year-old Astle had been in India with New Zealand’s ‘A’ team and was elevated to the full squad earlier this week for a series that includes three ODIs and three Twenty20 internationals. He was replaced by Ish Sodhi.

“Todd was really impressive in the recent New Zealand ‘A’ tour over here and had done everything he possibly could to get himself ready for this series,” New Zealand coach Mike Hesson said in a statement. “He deserved this opportunity and everyone in the team is certainly feeling for Todd. He’ll return to New Zealand and get himself ready for a big summer.” Astle was first named in the New Zealand side in 2012 and has played just two Tests, the second of which was last year, and two Twenty20s.

He has yet to play a one-day international. His performances in domestic cricket, where he is also a handy lower-middle order batsmen, however, have kept him on the selectors’ radar. He had performed well on the ‘A’ tour to nudge Sodhi out of the one-day squad but managed to bowl just three deliveries before he was injured in New Zealand’s warmup match against an Indian Board President’s XI in Mumbai on Tuesday. The first one-day international against India is on Oct. 22.

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