Tom Latham suffers finger injury ahead of WC 2019
New Zealand wicketkeeper-batsman Tom Latham is set to miss the Kiwis first match against Sri Lanka on June 1 in the upcoming World Cup due to finger injury.
He fractured his left middle finger in Matt Henry’s over during the last warm-up match against Australia last week while keeping wicket. He continued wicket-keeping despite the hit in his finger but later he left the field to consult with the team physio.
It was revealed that his finger was displaced and cracked. But The 27-year-old visited a specialist upon his arrival to Christchurch where he experienced an X-ray and was announced fit enough to go with the squad for the World Cup. The X-ray showed that it was just a small fracture.
Latham will miss the two warm-up matches against India and West Indies and the side’s opener against Sri Lanka. “Regardless of whether he [Latham] has his spot in those warm-up matches we’ll adopt a step by step strategy on that, which will be down to the medical guys and Gary [Stead] and care staff when they’re over there,” New Zealand selector Gavin Larsen said.
He also informed that both Tim Seifert and BJ Watling are in contention to replace Latham if there happens any serious situation. But they will not travel with the World Cup squad to England and Wales. “They’re both prepared. Tim has returned off the back of his finger damage, that is OK, and BJ has been going admirably. We have got the different skill sets covered,” he said.
New Zealand’s second choice wicket-keeper Tom Blundell will play in the place of Tom Latham in the first match against Sri Lanka if Latham doesn’t recover in time. In that case, Blundell will become a first New Zealand player to play his debut match in World Cup since 1987.
Uncapped Tom Blundell got the surprise call in World Cup squad as the main second choice wicket-keeper Tim Seifert himself just recovered from the finger injury. So it will be a dream debut for Blundell in the World Cup undoubtedly.