In a major boost for New Zealand, it has been confirmed that Kane Williamson will be part of their 15-member squad for the upcoming Cricket World Cup.
Skipper Williamson, who sustained a knee injury during his stint in the Indian Premier League 2023, has made significant strides in his recovery, enough to warrant his selection in the World Cup team. However, his inclusion does not necessarily imply he will be match-ready for the opening game.
New Zealand head coach, Gary Stead, lauded Williamson’s grit amidst prolonged recovery. “Kane has applied phenomenal dedication to his rehabilitation and has been supported by a strong group of experts around him,” Stead said.
“He’s left no stone unturned in trying to get back playing cricket at the highest level. We are delighted to be in a place to select him. At the same time, he’s also kept perspective about his recovery and hasn’t wanted to rush or force his way back too early. As we’ve previously said, it’s great he wants to play cricket for New Zealand in the long term.”
Stead also emphasised the measured approach adopted in Williamson’s recuperation, “As we’ve said throughout this process we want to give Kane every bit of available time to aid his recovery. The World Cup is not a short tournament and we will continue to monitor his progress over the next month ahead of the first tournament match.”
Williamson has been training with New Zealand squad in the ongoing England tour, despite not being an official part of the team. His hopes are now pinned on making a full recovery to actively participate in the World Cup competition.
Despite having played only 12 ODIs since the last World Cup final in 2019, Williamson is known for his exceptional prowess in the 50-over format, making him a vital component of the squad. The official lineup for the World Cup will be announced by New Zealand cricket management on September 11.