Hamstring strain rules Neesham out of one-off SL T20

New Zealand

Days after having made an impressive return to international cricket, James Neesham has been sidelined again, this time due to injury. The New Zealand allrounder has been ruled out of the one-off T20 against Sri Lanka on January 11, due to a grade-one hamstring strain he picked up during the third ODI in Nelson on Tuesday.

Neesham will return home to rest and Central Districts allrounder Doug Bracewell, who was a part of the ODI squad, will replace him in the 13-member T20 squad. According to New Zealand’s physio Vijay Vallabh, Neesham felt some tightness in his right hamstring during Sri Lanka’s pursuit of 365 on Tuesday and left the field for treatment.

“He’s iced and compressed the injury and will be reassessed in a couple of days,” Vallabh said in a release from New Zealand Cricket.

The ODI series against Sri Lanka – which concluded on Tuesday with the hosts winning 3-0 – had been Neesham’s first appearance for the national side since June 2017, and he made an immediate impact. In the first ODI, he clubbed an unbeaten 47 off 13 balls, which included five sixes in an over off Thisara Perera. He provided another round of death-overs fireworks in the second ODI, hitting 64 off 37. Across the three matches, Neesham scored 123 runs at a strike rate of 219.64, and hit ten sixes. He was effective with the ball, too, picking up six wickets in the series, at an economy rate of 6 runs per over.

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