New Zealand have suffered a big blow ahead of their upcoming ODI series against the West Indies as experienced speedster Matt Henry has been ruled out due to a rib injury. Henry, who has represented Black Caps in 60 ODIs, experienced pain in his left side during practice last week and couldn’t improve after treatment from the medical staff.

New Zealand head coach Gary Stead mentioned that Matt’s injury is not far too serious, but it was decided to send him home in order to keep the fast bowler ready for the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy ODI series against Australia in September.

“It’s a shame for Matt to have to return home at this point of the tour. Although the injury is not overly serious – we felt there was a significant risk it would become worse through playing. Matt is on his way home as we speak and will begin his rehabilitation immediately with an eye to being ready for the ODI series in Australia in early September,” said Stead in a statement.

To replace Matt, the New Zealand Cricket (NZC) have called up Ben Sears, who represents Wellington Firebirds in the domestic arena. Sears, who hasn’t yet played an ODI for New Zealand, made his T20I debut in September 2021 in Bangladesh.

“With the upcoming ODI series starting on Wednesday and consisting of three games over five days, we saw it as prudent to bring in a fully fit replacement. Ben comes fresh from a successful tour with the BLACKCAPS in Europe, and while he is yet to play ODI cricket – we believe he’s ready if called upon. At 24 years old, he’s an exciting young prospect, and we like the pace and skills he possesses,” added Stead.

New Zealand ODI squad (updated):

Kane Williamson (captain), Finn Allen, Trent Boult, Michael Bracewell, Devon Conway, Lockie Ferguson, Martin Guptill, Tom Latham, Daryl Mitchell, Jimmy Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ben Sears.

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