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NZ call up Somerville to replace injured Boult for Sydney Test

Sydney, Dec 30 (IANS) New Zealand have called up off-spinner Will Somerville for the third and final Test of the ongoing series against Australia to be played at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) from January 3. Somerville will replace pace-bowler Trent Boult who is returning home to New Zealand after suffering a fracture to his right hand.

Since debuting against Pakistan in Abu Dhabi one year ago, Somerville played two further Tests for the Black Caps in Sri Lanka in August and boasts 14 wickets at an average of 25.

Despite losing a seamer, New Zealand have included the 35-year-old spinner for the dead rubber considering the nature of the surface at the SCG which traditionally favours spin.

Coach Gary Stead said the inclusion of Somerville was a nod to the expected conditions in Sydney.

“There’s no secret the SCG pitch is one of the more spin-friendly in Australia,” said Stead.

“Will offers something different to our two other spinners in the squad with his right arm off-spin and height.

“The fact he’s played a lot of cricket in Sydney during his career for New South Wales will also be helpful as we prepare for this final Test.”

New Zealand have already lost the series, facing crushing defeats in the two matches played in Perth and Melbourne.

–IANS

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