New Zealand are currently touring Australia where they have already conceded the three-match Test series, trailing by 2-0. Their captain Kane Williamson’s tactics on the field have come under intense criticism from former skipper and teammate Brendon McCullum. Moreover, McCullum has echoed former Australian captain Ricky Ponting’s comments of leaving Mitchell Santner out for the third Test in Sydney, starting from 3rd of January, 2020.
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Santner came in with a reasonably good reputation with the ball and is a competent batsman down the order. Contrary to that, the left-arm spinner has had a forgettable outing in the first two Tests. In the first two Tests combined, the 27-year old has picked up only one wicket, conceding 250 runs. He has hardly threatened the Australian batsmen, and they have managed to milk him for runs easily.
Hence, Brendon McCullum admitted that New Zealand must consider leaving him out and that he needs to work on his game before returning to the Test side. The 38-year old further believes that all the players go through a rough patch. It doesn’t mean they can’t find themselves back in the squad. The tourists have an option to play Will Somerville or Todd Astle for the dead rubber in Sydney, given the deck has traditionally assisted spin. Somerville was added to the Test squad following an injury to Trent Boult in the second Test that ruled him out of the series.
“I don’t expect he’ll play this test match and I think for him he’ll have to go away and work on some things. Everyone gets dropped at some stage in their careers, and that doesn’t mean you can’t play at this level, it just means you’ve got some work to do so.” Brendon McCullum said as quoted by newshub.co.nz
Nathan Lyon feels otherwise:
Mitchell Santner’s counterpart Nathan Lyon, however, believes that his all-round ability is hard to overlook and that he could play a big part at the Sydney Cricket Ground, which relatively aids spin than that of Perth and Melbourne.
“We’re expecting him to definitely play and play a massive role in the next week,” Lyon stated
Australia defeated New Zealand by 296 runs in the first Test in Perth and 247 runs in the second Test in Melbourne. The home side has thoroughly dominated a contest that was slated to be a closely fought one.