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Nathan McCullum likely to miss first game

ESPNcricinfo staff

February 19, 2011

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Nathan McCullum took three wickets in an over, New Zealand v Zimbabwe, World Twenty20, Guyana, May 4, 2010
Nathan McCullum has played in 16 of New Zealand's last 20 one-day matches © AFP
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Players/Officials: Nathan McCullum
Series/Tournaments: ICC Cricket World Cup
Teams: New Zealand

New Zealand will most likely be without offspinner Nathan McCullum for their first match of the World Cup, against Kenya on Sunday, after he spent two days in hospital with a high fever. McCullum was discharged on Saturday morning, but captain Daniel Vettori said he did not want to risk him for Sunday's match.

"Nathan has been discharged from the hospital this morning [Saturday morning] and joined us for a light session during the day," Vettori told ESPNcricinfo. "He is a lot better and we might take a decision on playing him. He is confident that he can take part in the match tomorrow, but I do not want to take a risk with him since he is required for the full tournament."

McCullum reported to the team's medical staff that he felt unwell on Thursday night, and they discovered he had a high temperature, so he was taken to a hospital in Chennai, where the New Zealand team are staying. He stayed in hospital through Thursday night and Friday.

Over the last six months, McCullum has established himself as a regular member of New Zealand's starting XI in ODIs, playing most often as a second spinner alongside captain Daniel Vettori. He has started in 16 of New Zealand's last 20 one-dayers and, though he has not always been among the wickets, has managed to maintain a decent economy rate of 4.50 in the last 12 months. He has also contributed runs down the order, scoring two half-centuries in New Zealand's recently concluded home series against Pakistan.

New Zealand's other spin option is left-armer Luke Woodcock, who has played only two ODIs. New Zealand come into the tournament low on confidence after having lost 14 of their last 16 ODIs.


Comments: 9 
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Posted by Bilal on (February 20, 2011, 3:51 GMT)

I think he should man up and play...

Posted by Abrar on (February 19, 2011, 14:48 GMT)

bad news for nz team i think hopefully he will play next match.

Posted by Jawwad on (February 19, 2011, 4:09 GMT)

Nathan McCullum! Welcome to Sub-Continent. We didn't spare Alexander.

Posted by Ryo on (February 18, 2011, 20:59 GMT)

A thousand World Cup Fantasy Team pundits are gonna have to change their team selection now. He was pretty cheap as well for an all-rounder, a good pick. But unfortunately such is life.

Posted by Karan on (February 18, 2011, 15:49 GMT)

Woodcock is probably good enough for the game against Kenya. Not really a problem unless he is still sick for the next game.

Posted by Deepak on (February 18, 2011, 15:09 GMT)

So sad to hear this news, this would make tail little longer & inexperienced spinner in team. i hope they will play prefer extra seamer over woodcock. GL Kenya hope u will be winners & change the group standings.

Posted by Afra on (February 18, 2011, 14:25 GMT)

I really hope Nathan McCullum could be well for Sunday's game. He is one allrounder NZ can depend on and having him injured in the very first match is very bad. I was wondering how long the black caps were going to get on without injuries...

Posted by refad on (February 18, 2011, 14:11 GMT)

it will be a big loss for new zealand if he does not play he is one of few players whose high on form and confidence

Posted by Dummy4 on (February 18, 2011, 13:44 GMT)

When you have fever in that part of the world, the temperature would start at 104. No worries :)

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