New Zealand’s tour of Australia is nothing less than a disaster as the Black Caps are struggling not only on the field but also off it. In fact, their condition is so poor that their former opener and batting coach Peter Fulton had to don the Test whites once again on Saturday during the ongoing third Test in Sydney. The visitors have a depleted squad at their disposal because of injuries and flu.
In the series opener in Perth, debutant pacer Lockie Ferguson broke down with a calf strain after bowling just 11 overs and returned home. In the following Test at the MCG, Trent Boult made his comeback but it did not last long as he suffered a fractured finger after copping a bouncer on the glove from Australia speedster Mitch Starc.
And the New Year started on a more dismal note for New Zealand as they were struck by a virus which ruled out their captain Kane Williamson, middle-order batter Henry Nicholls and left-arm spinner Mitch Santner out of the ongoing Test with illness. The Black Caps later called up uncapped 23-year-old Glenn Phillips as a cover.
More bad news in Sydney
Things went from bad to worse in the Sydney Test as New Zealand pacer Matt Henry also suffered an injury. He broke his thumb on day one of the game although he is set to bowl and could bat depending on the match situation. On day two, Jeet Raval was struck by flu and thus New Zealand had no option but to ask Peter Fulton to don the whites once again.
New Zealand Cricket’s official Twitter handle later posted a picture of Peter Fulton sitting in whites with pacer Tim Southee and wrote, “Peter Fulton is in the whites with Jeet Raval the latest to suffer from the flu. Boys fighting on the park – Will Somerville with the early wicket of Wade”
Peter Fulton is in the whites with Jeet Raval the latest to suffer from the flu 😷 Boys fighting on the park – Will Somerville with the early wicket of Wade 🏏
🇦🇺 CARD | https://t.co/EPIJotM8GY#AUSvNZ #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/5agcuwhi4i
— BLACKCAPS (@BLACKCAPS) January 4, 2020
Australia, meanwhile, have posted a daunting total of 454 in their first innings. In-form Marnus Labuschagne was the difference again as he scored his first double-century in Tests before being dismissed for 215.
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