New Zealand fast bowler Trent Boult has been rested from the final ODI against Pakistan on Friday as well as the first T20I that follows next week. To ensure the team has left-arm cover, the selectors have brought in Ben Wheeler, who last played international cricket in February 2017.
Seth Rance, the seamer who made his debut against Ireland last year, will join the ODI squad in Wellington for the final game and stay back for the first T20I as well. New Zealand's selectors continued their policy of rotating many of their first choice players with Tim Southee being given the second T20I off. Ross Taylor will be available for the first T20I only, while Lockie Ferguson will take that day off.
"Ben's ability to swing the ball makes him a threatening bowler and his batting power and athleticism in the field compliments that nicely," selector Gavin Larsen said. "It will be nice to see more of Ben and Seth while we manage the workloads of Tim and Trent."
Tom Bruce retained his spot in the squad to deny Mark Chapman, who has played two ODIs and 19 T20Is for Hong Kong, a maiden call up to the New Zealand squad. Chapman has been in sizzling form in New Zealand's domestic T20 competition, tied for second place with 300 runs at an average of 37.50, including an innings of 101 off 58 balls three matches ago against Canterbury.
Bruce made 28 runs in three T20Is against West Indies earlier this year. His best score of 59 not out came in his second T20I against Bangladesh last January and, since then, has only crossed 30 once in eight innings.
"We have three guys who were seriously considered for that specialist batsman spot at number five, however we've backed the incumbents who have performed so well of us in recent times," Larsen said. "Mark has been really impressive for Auckland, but with the form that Tom and Ross have been in we felt they deserved to continue getting opportunities. We'd like to see Mark continue to work on his bowling, which could open up other opportunities for him outside of just that number five spot."
Chapman's non-selection for New Zealand means he remains eligible to represent Hong Kong. He has not played for the country of his birth since a loss to Scotland at Nagpur in the opening round of the 2016 World T20, though there remains faint hope in Hong Kong circles that he may make himself available to play the World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe this March.
New Zealand Cricket also announced that players who are not part of the ODI squad for the ongoing series against Pakistan but have been named in the T20I squad - Wheeler, Bruce, Anaru Kitchen, Glenn Phillips and Ish Sodhi - will be free to play in the Super Smash T20 final on January 20 in Hamilton but would be unavailable should the match be pushed to a reserve day.