New Zealand news

Wagner's eligibility for New Zealand confirmed

ESPNcricinfo staff

April 19, 2012

Comments: 57 | Text size: A | A

Neil Wagner bowls, Otago Volts v Northern Knights, Queenstown, New Zealand, November 9, 2010
Neil Wagner had moved to New Zealand in 2008 and his inclusion in the New Zealand team has been highly anticipated © Getty Images
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Neil Wagner, the South Africa-born fast bowler, is now eligible to play for New Zealand, the ICC has confirmed. Wagner had moved to New Zealand in 2008 and his inclusion in the New Zealand team has been highly anticipated, following two prolific seasons on the domestic circuit.

Last month, there was some doubt over how soon Wagner would be eligible to play for New Zealand. The ICC's regulations state that a player must reside in the relevant country for a minimum of 183 days for four consecutive years to qualify. Wagner had had two short trips out of New Zealand during his time there but received positive rulings on his applications for these two absences to be viewed as exceptional circumstances, prompting him to be declared eligible.

The New Zealand board had submitted the applications on Wagner's behalf to the ICC's exceptional circumstances committee, who then made a recommendation to cricket committee chairman Clive Lloyd.

During his run in domestic cricket, where he has represented Notherns and more recently Otago, Wagner was named the most valuable player of the Plunket Shield for 2010-11, after taking 51 wickets in nine games in the competition. That included a record five wickets in one over, against Wellington. In the 2011-12 season he had topped the wicket-takers' list again, with 46 wickets in 10 games.

New Zealand's next international assignment is a tour of the Caribbean that begins in Florida at the end of June.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by ForgeNZ on (April 22, 2012, 9:54 GMT)

Believe you me there are loads of extremely talented crickerters out there that for some reason or another will never get to represent their home country. NZ needs two opening batsman that qualify for this reason.

Posted by Min2000 on (April 22, 2012, 2:10 GMT)

As a Black Caps fan I'm not convinced we need Wagner just yet - we lack tearaway quicks but Martin, Bracewell, Gillespie & Southee all bowl 140+ and all swing the ball. AND, there's already plenty of left arm options in McKay, Boult and Jimmy Franklin. But if there are any Sth African openers going, we'll take 2 please! :P

Posted by dalboy12 on (April 20, 2012, 23:19 GMT)

I think its very different if a player has moved countries for personal and lifestyle reasons, I don't think we want too many just jumping ship waiting 3 years and playing for different nations if that number starts getting to over half a team then its going to look at bit stupid. A lot of South African are moving due to lifestyle moves and why shouldn't they be able to continue to play cricket at the highest level for their adopted country. Wagner will be great, but not good enough to ball teams out for under 200, so that means we still some batsman

Posted by zenboomerang on (April 20, 2012, 16:09 GMT)

@Morgsy... Re: allrounder... Someone I have always thought has often been missing from NZ either as a batsman / spinner or seamer... Just a great bonus to a team when things aren't going your way - imagine SA without Kallis or Oz without Watson...

Posted by zenboomerang on (April 20, 2012, 16:08 GMT)

@IamDan... lol... So true, so true... Where would any country be without adventurous souls prepared to improve their life my moving to a better environment for themselves?... Survival of the fittest or just basic improving your own (&families) lot in life... Couldn't agree more...

Posted by Tartanspringbok on (April 20, 2012, 13:51 GMT)

And very soon we will have Horses running in Greyhound races. Will that improve Greyhound racing?

Posted by mahjut on (April 20, 2012, 12:45 GMT)

@DR.THIRSTY ... i think 4 years is too short - but more than happy for your kids to play for NZ (as that'll be where they learn their cricket) or Eng [they wouldn't choose HK. @IAMDAN ... colour has nothing to do with it and their choice is their choice but as a zimbo i can tell you that no matter how much we could do with any number of foreign players in our cricket team ... i'd genuinely be less interested in their international progress than any lowly zim player - if they play domestically it makes a differnece, i'd be more interested - but otherwise i can't see how the ease of migration would strengthen cricket except for countries that provide a secure living (forget the development of Zim cricket then). btw TROYD (Andrew), a few zimbo have been approached by Ireland already so prepare yourself for losing Jarvis to someone if he continues to impress (in the same way Ballance is gone). The test 'league' becomes meaningless if it is not representative - Eng as #1...who would care??

Posted by Morgsy on (April 20, 2012, 8:44 GMT)

At last a real spear head! Now get Milne in there too...With the likes of Bracewell, Boult, Southee and Bennett also chasing a spot suddenly our bowling doesn't look too bad!

Anyone got a couple of openers and a decent all rounder we could borrow for 10 yrs or so?

Posted by Vivian_Richard on (April 20, 2012, 8:31 GMT)

Interesting development. Good for us spectators.

Posted by IamDan on (April 20, 2012, 8:20 GMT)

Who cares, where you were born, the colour of your skin, your religious beliefs, and your sexual preferences, Cricket will only benefit more, if we have more competitive, Test nations. Andrew Strauss could have played for 3 countries, born in Saffer, raised and educated in OZ, but settled in England as a teenager because of his parents work. Overlooked, talented players, deserve the chance to play Cricket at the highest level, if they want to move and live in a new Nation, its there choice. Enough Said

Posted by maddy20 on (April 20, 2012, 3:25 GMT)

@sachin_vvsfan What a brilliant idea! Hats of to ya :D

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 1:08 GMT)

To the people suggesting SA should have a 2nd team. They probably should. But then, 10 years ago, so should have Australia. Now Australia probably doesn't have the depth, I doubt SA will always have this depth though....

Posted by Shongololo on (April 20, 2012, 0:00 GMT)

Add Jade Dernbach, BJ Watling, Grant Elliott to list opf Saffas to represent other nationals...

Posted by dr.thirsty on (April 19, 2012, 23:28 GMT)

It is probably worth noting that the issue of cricketers of SA extraction playing for other nations will only spread and increase. Leaving aside those who moved overseas as adults for career reasons, there has been a huge wave of families emigrating from SA for some time now. I am an Englishman currenty living in Northland, NZ, and am struck by the vast number of Saffas I meet every day. The same is true in the UK, and I'm told that areas of Western Oz in particular are like 'little Joburgs'. So there is a large and growing SA diaspora in English speaking countries and they love their sport. My son plays B grade (10yr old) cricket, and the best players in his team, and league, are South African kids. Give it 10-15 years and and this current crop of youngsters will be representing Eng, NZ & Oz. Quick poser; my kids were born in England, live in NZ (with dual nationality) and and spent most of their lives in Hong Kong. Who should they play for? The world's a small place; deal with it!

Posted by Troyd on (April 19, 2012, 19:40 GMT)

If he's good enough to play for NZ and not making the SA side fair enough .. just don't go getting any ideas about Kyle Jarvis!!!!!

Posted by sukantc on (April 19, 2012, 19:10 GMT)

I am really happy to see Neil Wagner being eligible to play for New Zealand.

Although I an Indian as a cricket lover I am happy to see a good bowler making his

way to International cricket.

Sukant Chakraborty

Posted by Supa_SAFFA on (April 19, 2012, 18:09 GMT)

Why can't SA send an 'A-Team' to play against non-test teams and raise the level of competition they are exposed to? These should still count as full-on internationals.

Posted by Praxis on (April 19, 2012, 16:15 GMT)

South Africa should be allowed to field two different test teams, they have too many talents available.

Posted by passionate_cricket_follower on (April 19, 2012, 15:37 GMT)

What's wrong in someone choosing his country to play for? I feel should be OK if the country is interested in that individual. I'm sure players like Darren Lehmann, Ian Harvey, Michael Bevan would have played 100 tests had they played for any other country than Australia, or VVS Laxman would at least play in 3 WCs had he played for any other country than India. Wouldn't cricket be benefitted if we see more quality players in the Test level?

Posted by Supa_SAFFA on (April 19, 2012, 14:53 GMT)

NZ, AUS and ENG have long been favourite destinations for professionals from SA to emigrate to, in all trades. It's no wonder then that they are making their mark on the sports field too. Their forefathers survived and tamed the wild African bushveld, so the rest of the world is hardly a challenge. I'm just disappointed that the SA coach of OZ isn't exploring the wealth of expatriate talent at his disposal.

Posted by Robster1 on (April 19, 2012, 14:50 GMT)

Four years is not a long enough qualification period. And Wagner has already fielded as a substitute in tests for SA. Too many Southern Africans now in Kiwi colours.

Posted by Gizza on (April 19, 2012, 14:39 GMT)

@abyrao, what do you been by "Patel" nonsense? Jeetan Patel is a New Zealander. He was born in Wellington. If you're talking about Dipak Patel, yes he was a Brit of Kenyan origin but he had to play domestic cricket in New Zealand for 6 years (2 years longer than the current ICC rules) so that's a long time. Maybe the current rule should be stretched out to 5 or 6 years. I hope everyone realises that cricketers playing for multiple countries has existed since the late 1800's very close to when the very first Tests were played. This is definitely not a recent phenomenon. See this Cricinfo article

Posted by mahjut on (April 19, 2012, 14:27 GMT)

off the top of my head; Van wyk, Wagner {NZ}, Prior, Keiswetter, Trott, KP, Meaker, [Strauss is English enough for me], Dernbach {Eng} ten Doeschate {Nederlands}, Van de Merve, Botha, Fourie, Sorensen {Ireland} ... 13 SA players on the international scene not playing for SA - and to be fair to them, it is highly unlikely any but Prior would make the SA team (with Trott an outside possibility - he's certainly better than Rudolph though probably not streets ahead of Prince - except on Prince's current form:( ) . ...and of the whole bunch above (I excluded Strauss from my count) Prior is the least South African - so good on 'em for sneaking in to International cricket the only way open to them...

Posted by Bruisers on (April 19, 2012, 14:21 GMT)

@Meety - You forgot Matt Prior and Craig Kieswetter..!

Posted by StevieS on (April 19, 2012, 14:21 GMT)

Great looks like we are going the way of English cricket, personally I hope he never gets picked no matter how good he is and instead a New Zealander takes his spot.

Posted by mahjut on (April 19, 2012, 14:12 GMT)

@IamDan ... I don't mind the whole thing - it simply is what it is, but sadly for SA any young half-decent player obviously have the mentality you (appear to) have, which is "if I'm not picked as a youngster then i've been hard done by and need to go elsewhere". I'm guessing, like KP, at 22 - while still in SA - he was probably not good enough for a place in any SA national team (including the A squad). There is no 'right' to selection as there is no obligation to stay...maybe, like KP, he'll do a decent job in his adopted home...and go a step further by actually winning over the locals (judging from the comments here he's done that)

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 14:11 GMT)

Now, South Africa-A team should be indicted into ICC as a full time Team and start playing the ICC Tests, ODIs and T20's. Thus giving best players to play for their nation.

Posted by Jeffrey_indubai on (April 19, 2012, 13:38 GMT)

@Meety: Don't forget Kieswetter as well!

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 13:22 GMT)

Looks like saf have an infinite supply of fast bowlers!!

Posted by samincolumbia on (April 19, 2012, 13:18 GMT)

ICC - Why 4 years? Can you change the absurd rule to make it 4 months!! It's a farce anyway you look at it.

Posted by samincolumbia on (April 19, 2012, 13:16 GMT)

What a joke!! So people are OK with this farce, but they come out in droves to blame BCCI for something silly as the DRS!! BCCI can easily India's bowling problem by importing 3 or 4 saffa bowlers, keep them in the country for 4 years and voila they are part of the national team.

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 13:05 GMT)

IamDan, all very well, but I can assure you that Brad Hodge and Stuart Law wouldn't want to play for any country apart from Australia.

For some it's about playing cricket at the highest level, for others it's playing at the highest level and representing your country.

Posted by vdm1 on (April 19, 2012, 12:49 GMT)

Excellent, more Saffa talent on show in the test arena!!!

Posted by Steggz on (April 19, 2012, 12:43 GMT)

Tartanspringbok, the man has paid his dues. He's been in NZ for 4 years. He's earned the right to play for them.

Posted by abyrao on (April 19, 2012, 12:39 GMT)

Is there any difference between a English team and an IPL team, both have a mix of nationalities, hope NZL does not go that way. Although NZ has never won a major tournament they had some greats like Hadlee, Crowe... Feel they should stop this Patels Nethulas Krugers or Wagners business.

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 12:05 GMT)

Hmm....Come on India n Pakistan..Both teams can be benefited if they trade their batsmen n bowlers :D ! Anyone for Kohli ? :P

Posted by KingOwl on (April 19, 2012, 12:04 GMT)

Yeah, why not have a player-loan system among countries, just like what is being proposed for the IPL. This is a joke. Just found out that South Africa's second biggest export, behind diamonds is ... yeah, you guessed it right: Cricketers!!

Posted by Meety on (April 19, 2012, 11:50 GMT)

@Mitcher - champagne! == == == What would be a good marketing concept for the SACB, is to host a Residents v Expats match. Would be a corker! Ex-pats; 1. Strauss, 2. Compton, 3. Trott, 4. KP, 5. ten Doeschete, 6. Kruger, 7. Van Wyk, 8. Nesser, 9. Mommson, 10. Wagner, 11. Loots

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 11:34 GMT)

Awesome news, I've been waiting for this update for ages. He'll be slotted straight in to the side, can't wait to see him playing for us at last!

Posted by zenboomerang on (April 19, 2012, 11:24 GMT)

Really happy for Wagner, he's put in the hard yards over many years & fully deserves a Test birth... I think NZ are starting to get a good seamers squad together & will surprise teams in years to come...

Posted by zenboomerang on (April 19, 2012, 11:23 GMT)

@IamDan... Yes I like that idea for lower ranked teams with shorter qualifying periods - might be a bit hard to define a cut-off line though, top 4 or 6?... Might also have to look at a countries historical Test position & domestic cricket base... England has had the advantage of where parents were born for far too long which gives them a work-around the 4 year wait period - aka the many Oz & SA players that have played for them even though they developed their skills in another country...

Posted by vertical on (April 19, 2012, 11:08 GMT)

This could become a trend, SA and Aus produce great talent England,WI and NZ can benefit from these players who cannot make into their national team.Though Mitchell Johnson is mostly useless any chance of him moving to India he is still better than any of India's fast bowlers ;can win us 1 in 10 tests good enough (when was a last time an Indian fast bowler won us a test series maybe Zaheer against Eng in 2007)

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 10:47 GMT)

Should be great for NZ with the red ball at least. I also think it will help promote some competition amongst the bowling ranks. But we can't forget batting still very much remains the problem for NZ.

Posted by Charindra on (April 19, 2012, 9:37 GMT)

Good news. England has clearly benefited from SA talent. So maybe it's NZ's turn. And they need all the help they can get to be world beaters.

Posted by Marktc on (April 19, 2012, 9:30 GMT)

Let's hope that NZ does not go the same way England has gone and field almost 50% Ex South Africans.

Posted by IamDan on (April 19, 2012, 9:19 GMT)

Good on the Kiwis, Quality fast bowlers are rare, even rarer are quality Left arm Fast bowlers. Saffers` overlooked this young man, so fair enough that he went and plied his trade in the land of the `KIWI`, and has impressed all, in his new Country. Cricket rules should be more flexible, weaker Nations, should be allowed to go and get at least 2 players from other nations, that are not getting a gig in the National Team, 12 months should be the maximum amount of time, they have to wait. As an Aussie, Brad Hodge and Stuart Law, were both good enough to play 70 Tests, but when they were at their peak, we had a plethora of gun batsmen. A bit more common sense is needed, and Cricket would benefit greatly.

Posted by gimme-a-greentop on (April 19, 2012, 9:02 GMT)

I like the New Zealand immigration advert right next to this least Pakistan had the decency to donate SA a spinner...

Posted by Tartanspringbok on (April 19, 2012, 9:01 GMT)

Maybe the whole SA squad qualify for NZ now after touring there for 2 months. International cricket and sport in genral is becoming like club cricket. Soon Countries will be touting for players. Test cricket to take on the shape of the IPL with Cricket boards bidding in the closed season for the best players.

NEWS HEADLINE ** Dale Steyn transfers from South Africa to England for £2.5million**

Posted by sachin_vvsfan on (April 19, 2012, 8:47 GMT)

How about tweaking that rule say 2 consecutive months per year in 4 years? That way we will get all SA bowlers who play in IPL :)

Posted by switchmitch on (April 19, 2012, 8:32 GMT)

Any chance of Dale Steyn playing for India? We don't mind even if he is not a citizen of India, ask him to just play for

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 8:22 GMT)

Excellent news. Wagner will do wonders for NZ when he is selected for them, hopefully in their next tour :D

Posted by fan2011 on (April 19, 2012, 8:21 GMT)

Sri lanka should follow these steps and invite some fast bowling talents from SA, Pakistan to come and play for us..

Posted by satish619chandar on (April 19, 2012, 8:15 GMT)

SA is the best cricketing nation it seems.. They produce classy cricketers for themselves and donate them to other nations too.. Wish India too gets a couple of pace bowlers from them and with the sort of batting India has, they can dominate with better bowlers in their lineup..

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 8:06 GMT)

Finally... GREAT news :) This guy is going to be good!

Posted by Mitcher on (April 19, 2012, 8:00 GMT)

This can't be right. Surely he is only eligible for England.

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 7:55 GMT)

His arrival can't come soon enough. I've watched him eagerly in our domestic comp - can't wait to see him bowl for the black caps. Not a bad tailend bat either - more discipline than Bracewell. Yet another mountain for Southee to climb in order to get back.

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 7:40 GMT)

If he only needs 183 consecutive days per year for 4 years, why would two short trips be an issue? He could be gone 182 days straight per year and still be good, right?

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