Cricket: Injured Milne out of series

By Andrew Alderson

Adam Milne of New Zealand has been cast as "the new Bond". Photo / Getty Images
Adam Milne of New Zealand has been cast as "the new Bond". Photo / Getty Images

Canterbury pace bowler Hamish Bennett will replace Adam Milne in the New Zealand squad for the remainder of the one-day international series against India.

Bennett enters as the top wicket-taker in the Plunket Shield this season, taking 24 wickets at 23.12.

In the HRV Cup he took three wickets at 49 with an economy rate of 7.35.

Milne left the field during Sunday's victory in Napier. He had an MRI scan in Hamilton yesterday which showed a torn abdominal muscle. He will need a rehabilitation period of around six weeks.

Bennett joins the team for training in Hamilton this afternoon. The 26-year-old last played a ODI in March 2011 against Sri Lanka in Mumbai. He has played a solitary test; against India in 2010.

The dejection on Milne's face was palpable during the match, as the injury threatened to end a seminal summer.

Midway through his eighth over he spoke to captain Brendon McCullum about the niggle.

It was the start of his third spell in a match which had him regularly clocking in excess of 150km/h - the speedball radar counted eight occasions. It's understood Milne wanted to continue but McCullum advised otherwise. The 21-year-old left the field.

McCullum said: "It's tough for Milny to get injured bowling at that pace ... It doesn't look great."

Fellow bowler Mitchell McClenaghan said he was "absolutely gutted for the man".

"He had his [T20I] debut [as an 18-year-old in 2010], went back [to domestic cricket] worked on his accuracy and returned.

"To see someone bowl that quick and accurately is a throwback to the Shane Bond days."

Milne has been cast as "the new Bond" but needs a chance to settle if he's to sustain a career rather than being remembered for a fleeting link with the number 150.

The World T20 scheduled for Bangladesh (or possibly Sri Lanka or India) in March might be a logical return date.

Bennett will join the Black Caps at training in Hamilton this afternoon. The 26-year-old last played a ODI for his country in March 2011 against Sri Lanka in Mumbai.

- NZ Herald

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