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New Zealand cricket

New Zealand call up uncapped Ajaz Patel for Pakistan T20Is

New Zealand news

Ajaz Patel, the Central Stags left-arm spinner, has been included in New Zealand's 14-member squad for Twenty20 International series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates.

The 30-year-old, drafted into the Test squad previously, will head into the T20Is as New Zealand's second spin-bowling option after Ish Sodhi. 

“It’s no secret that spin is crucial in this part of the world and with the wickets on the slower side, we’ve taken the option of a second spinner to bring our squad up to 14-players,” said Gary Stead, the New Zealand Head Coach.

We’re fortunate that Ajaz has been playing over here for the past month and playing well; so he’ll be ready to go should he get his chance in the series

Patel was a part of the recently-concluded T20I series between New Zealand A and Pakistan A, which took place at the ICC Academy in Dubai earlier this month. He picked up four wickets in the three games, including a three-wicket haul.  

“We’re fortunate that Ajaz has been playing over here for the past month and playing well," said Stead. "He’ll be ready to go should he get his chance in the series." 

Patel has claimed 28 wickets in 26 T20 matches, with an average of 22.60 and economy just over 7.5. 

The first of three T20Is between Pakistan and New Zealand will be played at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday, 31 October. 

Squad: Kane Williamson(c), Mark Chapman, Colin de Grandhomme, Lockie Ferguson, Adam Milne, Colin Munro, Seth Rance, Tim Seifert, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Corey Anderson, Glenn Phillips, Ajaz Patel

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