ENG vs NZ 2022: Kane Williamson to miss the Second Test after testing Positive for COVID-19

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ENG vs NZ 2022: Kane Williamson to miss the Second Test after testing Positive for COVID-19

ENG vs NZ 2022: Kane Williamson is all set to miss the second Test against England after testing positive for COVID-19 on the eve of the second Test match. Williamson took a Rapid Antigen Test after experiencing minor symptoms on Thursday. Now after returning with positive results Williamson will begin his five days of isolation.

Tom Latham has been named as a stand-in cpatain in Williamson’s absence, while Hamish Rutherford, currently playing county cricket for Leicestershire, has been drafted in by New Zealand and has linked up with the squad in Nottingham on Friday morning.

“It’s such a shame for Kane to be forced to withdraw on the eve of such an important match,” Gary Stead, New Zealand’s head coach, said.

“We’re all feeling for him at this time and know-how disappointed he will be. Hamish was with the Test squad earlier in the tour and has been playing for the Leicestershire Foxes in the T20 Vitality Blast.”

One positive for New Zealand is that the rest of the touring team have returned with negative RATs & will continue following the tour health protocols of symptom reporting and subsequent testing if required.

This is not the first time COVID-19 has disrupted New Zealand’s tour as in the last week of May, three members of New Zealand’s touring party- Henry Nicholls, Blair Tickner, and Shane Jurgensen – were forced to isolate themselves after testing positive for Brighton ahead of the opening warm-up fixture against Sussex.

Adding to the frustration of missing a crucial match with England having a 1-0 lead in the three-match test series, the development is a major setback in Williamson’s rehabilitation, after he was forced to miss New Zealand’s previous five Tests due to a long-standing tendon injury in his left elbow.

Williamson’s long-standing injury has affected his form to a great extent. He came into the series on the back of a poor IPL season where he could amass 216 runs at 19.63 and a strike rate of 93.50 for Sunrisers Hyderabad. In the Lord’s Test as well he was able to score just 2 & 15 runs. His prolonged lean phase has become a matter of concern for both management & Williamson himself.

Meanwhile talking about the second Test, new Zeaalnd were already facing a selection dilemma after Colin De Grandhomme’s heel injury ruled him out of the remaining Test series. However, Nicholls is expected to be fit for selection, after his recovery from a calf injury & COVID-19. He could slot back into the middle order while Neil Wagner & Matt Henry are in contention for an extra pacer’s berth after the under-use of the spinner Ajaz Patel at Lord’s.

The second Test match between England & New Zealand will be played from 10th June, Friday at Trent Bridge in England.

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