New Zealand, on Wednesday, announced its squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup in Australia. Experienced campaigner Sophie Devine will lead the squad. Pacer Lea Tahuhu, who recently had her first child with Amy Satterthwaite has made a comeback to the squad ahead of the mega event.
New Zealand is grouped with Australia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and India in the tournament. They will start their campaign against Sri Lanka on 22 February in Perth.
Squad: Sophie Devine (c), Suzie Bates, Lauren Down, Maddy Green, Holly Huddleston, Hayley Jensen, Leigh Kasperek, Amelia Kerr, Jess Kerr, Rosemary Mair, Katey Martin, Katie Perkins, Anna Peterson, Rachel Priest, Lea Tahuhu
1. Sophie Devine
Veteran Sophie Devine will lead the White Ferns in this marquee event. The 30-year-old all-rounder bats with a strike rate of around 125 in T20is and also proudly holds the record of scoring the fastest fifty in T20I in just 18 balls. She has featured in every women’s T20 World Cup since its inception in 2009 and is currently ranked 6th in the T20 rankings for batting. She showed splendid form in last year’s WBBL05 and was adjudged the Player of the Tournament.
2. Suzie Bates
New Zealand’s most-capped female cricketer, the experienced all-rounder has scored over 3100 runs in the T20 format with a strike rate of 112. Currently ranked no.1 in the ICC T20 batting rankings for women, she averages around 30 in the format with her highest score being 124 not out.
3. Rachel Priest
A veteran of 75 T20s, the experienced wicketkeeper batter debuted back in 2003. However, she was missing from the international scene since the 2017 World Cup due to fitness issues. She has made a smooth comeback into the national side owing to impressive performances in the domestic circuit and successful stints in overseas leagues with Western Storm and Sydney Thunder in KSL and WBBL.
4. Lea Tahuhu
One of the fastest bowlers on the women’s international circuit, Lea Tahuhu is making a return to the national side post a parenthood sabbatical. Riding on raw pace coupled with experience, she has picked up 44 wickets in 51 T20I’s with an economy rate under 6.
5. Leigh Kasperek
28-year-old off-spinner Leigh Kasperek has played 35 T20I’s for her national side. Scalping 60 wickets in the process have made her the second-highest wicket-taker for New Zealand in this format. In a largely pace dominated bowling attack, she could very well trouble the opposition batters with her spin art.
6. Katey Martin
Having debuted for the White Ferns in 2003, the 35-year-old wicketkeeper batter is one of the most experienced players in the lot. In the 59 innings she has played for her country, she has scored 773 runs with 4 half-centuries. She remains a solid batter to play an anchoring role in the middle.
7. Maddy Green
A right-handed batter and an off-spinner, gifted with brilliant fielding skills, Maddy Green is a complete package of a cricketer. She plays for Brisbane Heat in WBBL.
8. Lauren Down
Yet to debut in the T20 format, uncapped batter Lauren Down has played 11 ODIs. She was one of the new entrants in the central contract list released last year by the New Zealand Cricket board.
9. Holly Huddleston
Pacer Holy Huddleston has picked up 11 wickets in 12 outings so far, with an economy rate under 5.
10. Hayley Jensen
The right-arm medium pacer has represented New Zealand in 21 T20Is, bagging 14 wickets with an economy of 6.94. She plays for Melbourne Renegades in the WBBL and hence has the required experience of bowling on bouncy Australian pitches.
11. Amelia Kerr
The 19-year-old leg spinner has 25 scalps in 25 T20I outings. She holds the record of being the youngest double centurion in international cricket across formats with her unbeaten 232 as an opener against Ireland. She was aged 17 years and 243 days at the time of achieving this feat.
12. Jess Kerr
Kerr had an impressive domestic season 2019-20 playing for Wellington Blaze topping the wickets charts with 20 scalps. She made her ODI debut against South Africa.
13. Rosemary Mair
Pace bowler, Rosemary Mair made her T20 debut in February 2019 against India Women. Last year, she was awarded a central contract by the cricketing board of New Zealand.
14. Katie Perkins
Having represented White Ferns in 50 T20Is, she has amassed 428 runs at a reasonable strike rate of around 94.7.
15. Anna Peterson
Spin bowling all-rounder Peterson was also a part of the squad in the 2018 edition of the World Cup in West Indies. She plays for Auckland Hearts in their domestic state league.
2020 ICC Women’s T20 World Cup – New Zealand
February 16: New Zealand v England
February 19: New Zealand v Thailand
February 22: New Zealand v Srilanka
February 27: New Zealand v India
February 29: New Zealand v Bangladesh
March 02: New Zealand v Australia
March 5: Semi-final 1, SCG
March 5: Semi-final 2, SCG
March 8: Final, MCG