New Zealand Pick Todd Astle On Ajaz Pate For The Bangladesh Tests > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more

Cricket news - New Zealand pick Todd Astle over Ajaz Patel for Bangladesh Tests

Astle had an injury-plagued 2018 and is returning to Test cricket from a knee surgery

New Zealand have preferred Todd Astle to Ajaz Patel in the 13-man squad announced for the upcoming three-Test series against Bangladesh. The 32-year-old Canterbury spinner had an injury-plagued 2018 and is returning to Test cricket from a knee surgery after missing the second Test against England in June and the tour of UAE last year, when Patel made his debut.

New Zealand squad: Kane Williamson (captain), Tom Latham, Jeet Raval, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling, Colin de Grandhomme, Todd Astle, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, Trent Boult, Matt Henry, Will Young

"It's great though to have Todd fit again and we're keen to see what his wrist-spin can offer in New Zealand conditions, and he'll also bolster the batting," selector Gavin Larsen said. "The spinning position has been the only real area we've changed and that's been largely dependent on conditions and injuries.

"We're in a fortunate position having a number of high-quality spinners available, and it's a tough call on Ajaz who was a star of the UAE tour."

Patel picked a five-wicket haul on debut in Abu Dhabi but hasn't been at his best in the Test matches that followed.

The rest of the squad is unchanged from the one that took on Sri Lanka. Will Young has again been included whereas Mitchell Santner continues to miss out owing to his ongoing recovery from a knee surgery.

The first of the three Tests starts on February 28 in Hamilton before the series moves to Wellington and Christchurch.

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