A New Zealand A squad featuring seven players with international experience has been selected to tour India for red and white ball fixtures in September.
The matches, all against India A, will be the first time a New Zealand A side has played overseas since the 2018 tour to the United Arab Emirates to play Pakistan A.
Alongside the players with full International experience, the squad also features five players with a chance to represent New Zealand A for the first time: Chad Bowes, Matt Fisher, Ben Lister, Robbie O’Donnell and Joe Walker.
Wellington Firebirds pace-bowler Logan van Beek returns to the NZ A programme after stints with the Netherlands, with the ICC eligibility rules allowing him to play for both sides concurrently.
Tom Bruce (Central Districts) and O’Donnell (Auckland) have been named co-captains for the tour which departs on Friday, August 26.
New Zealand A last toured India in 2017 and this visit will feature a similar structure, with three four-day matches and three one-day matches in Bangalore and Chennai, respectively.
BLACKCAPS selector Gavin Larsen, who will head away with the side as part of the support staff, said the tour represents a huge development opportunity for the playing and coaching group.
“It’s great to have A fixtures back on the touring calendar and even more exciting to have the team playing in foreign conditions,” Larsen said.
“This programme and tours like these are vital in developing our people and giving them opportunities to test themselves against quality opposition.
“We have an exciting mix in this group, including players who dominated our last home season such as Robbie O’Donnell and Tom Bruce, alongside emerging talents in Matt Fisher and Joe Walker.”
Larsen noted players such as Mark Chapman, Jacob Duffy and Dane Cleaver had experienced success with the BLACKCAPS during the recent series in Europe, and said their experience would be invaluable within this group.
“With a mix of red ball and white ball matches it’s a great chance to see the players in a variety of situations against what we know will be a very strong home side.
“The conditions present a great opportunity for the spin bowling group in particular, ahead of future tours and ICC events in the subcontinent.
“It’s exciting to welcome Logan back into the NZ A set-up. He’s a proven performer on the domestic scene and has impressed in his recent stints playing for the Netherlands.
“Touring India is one of the great experiences for any cricketer and I know the players and staff are looking forward to the challenge.”
Central Stags Head Coach Rob Walter will lead the coaching group, supported by Canterbury Assistant Coach Brendon Donkers and NZC High Performance Coach Paul Wiseman.
New Zealand A SQUAD
Tom Bruce (c) (Central Districts)
Robbie O’Donnell* (c) (Auckland)
Chad Bowes* (Canterbury)
Joe Carter (Northern Districts)
Mark Chapman (Auckland)
Dane Cleaver (wk) (Central Districts)
Jacob Duffy (Otago)
Matt Fisher* (Northern Districts)
Cameron Fletcher (wk) (Canterbury)
Ben Lister* (Auckland)
Rachin Ravindra (Wellington)
Michael Rippon (Otago)
Sean Solia (Auckland)
Logan van Beek (Wellington)
Joe Walker* (Northern Districts)
*Uncapped for NZ A
Seam bowling all-rounders Henry Shipley (Canterbury) and Nathan Smith (Wellington) were ruled out of contention due to injury, while Blair Tickner (Central Stags) was excused because of his upcoming wedding.
New Zealand A v India A
1st four-day match – Sept 1-4 (Bangalore)
2nd four-day match – Sept 8-11 (Bangalore)
3rd four-day match – Sept 15-18 (Bangalore)
1st one-day match – Sept 22 (Chennai)
2nd one-day match – Sept 25 (Chennai)
3rd one-day match – Sept 27 (Chennai)
The New Zealand A squad departs for India on Friday, August 26.