New Zealand left-arm pace bowler Trent Boult said his inclusion in New Zealand’s playing XI for the second Test against England — currently underway in Birmingham — will put him in ‘good stead’ for the World Test Championship final against India starting June 18.
Boult was not in New Zealand’s scheme of things for the second Test, which started on June 10, as he had arrived in England late and was in quarantine. But due to relaxed norms in England, he came out of quarantine sooner than expected and began his nets session when the first Test was on at Lord’s.
Taking his fitness into consideration, and the fact that New Zealand were hit by a spate of injuries ahead of the second Test, Boult was included in the playing XI.
“Initially I wasn’t expecting to play this game but everything fell into line, and I gave myself that chance to get out there and I think I’ll definitely be better off for that head-out,” said Boult on Friday, the second day of the Test.
“It’s one thing loading and getting through numbers in the nets but to simulate that kind of game fitness and having to come back three, four or five times in a day. There’s no real other way to do that. So I’m hoping it puts me in good stead (for the WTC final),” Boult told espncricinfo.com.
“The toes are a bit sore but that’s what happens when you ram into the shoes for 30 overs. I’m excited about what lies ahead next week in Southampton but equally excited with the opportunity here over the next couple of days.”
Boult did well for the Black Caps, snaring four wickets for 85 runs in 29 overs and restricting England to 303 in their first innings.
“What worked really well was the travel (from New Zealand) went well and I managed to get out of isolation in the UK quicker than expected. As you can imagine, I was very excited with the prospect of playing the second Test. I felt like I gave myself the best chance preparing with that week back at home and then getting straight into it here. Hopefully, we can get the job done and win a very important series.”