Kate Ebrahim and Thamsyn Newton have been recalled to the New Zealand women's T20I squad for the series against England at home in March following strong performances in the domestic Super Smash competition. The T20Is, to be played after the ODI leg as a series of double-headers alongside the men's games against Australia, will not feature Suzie Bates, who is still recovering from a right shoulder injury.
Ebrahim, whose last international appearance came in a T20I against Australia in Canberra in October 2018, hit 292 runs in nine innings at an average of 73.00 for Canterbury in the Super Smash, while also picking up a wicket in the eight overs she bowled in the competition. She has played a total of 31 ODIs and 37 T20Is over the years. Wellington's Newton, meanwhile, scored some handy runs but impressed with her medium-pace bowling, picking up seven wickets with an economy rate of 7.05 for Wellington women. She played the last of her 19 international matches in November 2017 against Pakistan in Sharjah.
Both of them were in action in the Super Smash final, where Ebrahim's 40-ball 45* helped Canterbury pull off a four-wicket win with two balls remaining.
"Kate and Thamsyn have worked hard and proven their ability in the Dream11 Super Smash this season," selector Jason Wells said in a statement. "Kate has been excellent with the bat for the [Canterbury] Magicians and yesterday's match-winning knock in the Grand Final capped off a superb Super Smash campaign for her.
"Thamsyn is an athletic cricketer whose all-round skills have served the [Wellington] Blaze well in their T20 campaign."
Apart from the missing Bates, the squad wears a familiar look, with Sophie Devine continuing to lead, and the likes of Amy Satterthwaite, Amelia Kerr, Lea Tahuhu, Leigh Kasperek and others all in the mix. "We have shown faith in this group of cricketers and believe they have the skills and talent to compete against a strong English side," Wells said.
Squad: Sophie Devine (capt), Kate Ebrahim, Maddy Green, Hayley Jensen, Leigh Kasperek, Amela Kerr, Jess Kerr, Rosemary Mair, Katey Martin (wk), Thamsyn Newton, Hannah Rowe, Amy Satterthwaite (vice-capt), Lea Tahuhu