New Zealand wicket-keeper and batsman BJ Watling’s participation in the first Test between New Zealand and West Indies at Seddon Park is now uncertain.
Watling may not be able to feature in the first Test following a hamstring niggle, as confirmed by head coach Gary Stead. Stead said that Watling sustained the injury during the opening round of New Zealand List A tournament.
In order to cover for his place, the Kiwis have called up batsman Devon Conway. If the inclusion of Conway is confirmed, this will be his debut Test. Conway has been in incredible form lately. He finished as the top-scorer of the 2019-2020 Plunket Shield Season with 701 runs in six games. His most spectacular performance was against Canterbury, in which he scored an unbeaten 327 runs. In addition to this, the 29-year old was also the leading run-scorer in the 2019-20 Ford Trophy. He registered 553 runs in 10 games of the tournament. His debut in the T20I series against West Indies has earned him consideration for a place in the playing squad.
However, he has a tough competitor for the position. Will Young is also being considered owing to his terrific form. He has put up a brilliant show during the New Zealand tour. Young was also named in the initial squad of the side. If Watling is unable to play in the upcoming Test, it remains to be seen which candidate between the two gets a chance.
The head coach has also confirmed that Tom Blundell will fill in the No. 6 slot in the absence of Watling.