New Zealand Cricket have announced central contracts for the upcoming 2022-23 season where left-arm spinner Ajaz Patel has made a return to the list, and all-rounder Michael Bracewell received a contract for the first time.
Meanwhile, veteran all-rounder Jimmy Neesham has been left out of the 20-player shortlist.
New Zealand Cricket Central Contract 2022-23
Neesham hasn’t played a Test since 2017, having featured in just nine T20Is over the last 12 months for New Zealand including the World Cup, where he aggregated 92 runs in seven innings at a strike rate of 135.29, to go with three wickets with an economy of 8.20.
Bracewell, who replaces Neesham, was recently included in the New Zealand Test squad for the England tour. He made his national debut in March against the Netherlands in a break-out season where he was also adjudged the Super Smash Player of the Year.
“Finalising the list seems to get tougher by the year,” New Zealand head coach Gary Stead said of the fierce competition to make the elite shortlist.
“The busy international calendar means we’re calling on a wider base of talent these days and the likes of Michael Bracewell is testament to the depth of that talent.
Michael’s been consistently performing on the domestic circuit for seasons now and we certainly see him as an international prospect in all three formats.
“It’s great to see Ajaz back on the list after narrowly missing out last season. His value as our leading red-ball spinner is clear and we’re excited to see the role he could play in the Test team going forward.
“I’d also like to acknowledge Ross Taylor and his immense contribution to the BLACKCAPS over a long and successful career,” he added.
Players offered New Zealand central contracts for 2022-23
Tom Blundell, Trent Boult, Michael Bracewell, Devon Conway, Colin de Grandhomme, Lockie Ferguson, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Daryl Mitchell, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Glenn Phillips, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, Kane Williamson, Will Young.