Neil Broom is in line for his Test debut after being called up to replace Ross Taylor who was ruled out of the second Test against South Africa in Wellington due to his calf strain. Taylor will be reassessed ahead of the final match of the series in Hamilton.
Kane Williamson and Mike Hesson said that Broom, who returned to the New Zealand limited-overs teams at the start of the season, jumped to the top of the queue because of his domestic experience and an injury to Dean Brownlie which meant he was not considered. Their other injury concern, Trent Boult, will be assessed in the three days leading into the Wellington Test after being unable to bowl after tea on the fourth day in Dunedin due to a hip problem.
Taylor, New Zealand's joint second-highest Test century-maker alongside Williamson, suffered a low grade tear of the right calf while batting on the second day and retired hurt on 8. He returned to complete his innings at the fall of the ninth wicket although he was restricted in his movements.
Broom gave up a deal with Derbyshire in English county cricket to resume his international career after a gap of nearly seven years when he was recalled to face Bangladesh. He scored his maiden international century in his second match back which was followed by a 97 and then hit 73 against Australia in Auckland. However, in the one-day series against South Africa he made 2,2 and 0 before being dropped.
"Neil has been around the one-day group for a period of time and been very successful," Williamson said. "He has played a lot of domestic cricket and been around for a long period of time."
Hesson, the New Zealand coach, said: "We've got an inexperienced batting line up so we were keen to have somebody with plenty of playing experience, someone who can play pace well and Neil has seen a little bit of South Africa before. We are going to miss Ross and that calming influence in the middle order, but it does provide an opportunity for Neil to step up and show us that he is ready for Test cricket."
Faf du Plessis, South Africa's captain, noted Broom's poor return in the one-day matches. "I haven't played against him with the red ball. Seen a bit on him in the one-dayers. We were quite successful in getting rid of him so hopefully that will continue. It's the experience they are going to miss with Ross. They can't replace that straight away."
Another name suggested for a call-up as Taylor's replacement was Colin Munro who is the only current player to average over 50 in New Zealand first-class cricket. He recently hit twin hundreds in a Plunket Shield match against Central Districts after losing his place in the ODI side and suffering a lean run in T20 cricket since his century against Bangladesh. Munro has one previous Test cap, earned against South Africa in early 2013.
"We are after an experienced middle-order player who can provide some solidity," Hesson said. "Colin is a different sort of player to that. Obviously very destructive on his day."
Meanwhile, Boult will travel with the squad to Wellington and will be monitored due to a sore hip which prevented him from bowling on the fourth afternoon. Boult bowled 15 overs in South Africa's second innings, after delivering 32.4 in the first, before being forced off the field.
"Boult is better today than yesterday. Yesterday he was in discomfort and we decided it wasn't a good idea for him to bowl. We will monitor him over the next couple of days," Hesson said.
New Zealand have reinforcements in the form of Tim Southee, who was dropped for the first Test, and have also brought Matt Henry into the squad although Williamson said that would have happened even without Boult's injury.
The final day of the first Test was washed out without a ball bowled.