Cricket: Rape-accused cricketer could play for NZ

Northern Districts cricket Scott Kuggeleijn is awaiting trial for a charge of rape. Photo / George Novak
Northern Districts cricket Scott Kuggeleijn is awaiting trial for a charge of rape. Photo / George Novak

New Zealand Cricket has confirmed that cricketer Scott Kuggeleijn could yet play for a national side this summer despite facing criminal charges of rape.

Waikato-based Kuggeleijn will stand trial in the Hamilton District Court on a date yet to be confirmed.

NZC confirmed today in a statement that it was possible the 24-year-old allrounder could play most of the upcoming summer season for Northern Districts and even the Black Caps or a New Zealand A side if selected.

Kuggeleijn has already played three one-day matches this week for a NZC Emerging Players side against a New Zealand XI in Christchurch.

"NZC believes the court process is the appropriate forum for judging the charge laid against Scott Kuggeleijn," Richard Boock, New Zealand Cricket's Public Affairs manager confirmed.

"In this respect, it (NZC) does not wish to comment on Scott's selection prospects, apart from confirming he has not been suspended."

Kuggeleijn has pleaded not guilty to the charge, which relates to an alleged incident from March last year, and his legal team has not been able to agree a trial date with the Crown yet. The case is back in court on September 29.

Following a strong Plunket Shield season last summer, cricket experts consider he is a bona fide prospect for national selection.

Kuggeleijn played for New Zealand A in 2014. His prospects of national selection have been boosted by the absence of fast bowlers Adam Milne and Mitchell McClenaghan and Adam Milne from the upcoming one-day series against India next month.

He will have the chance to press his claims via three upcoming Plunket Shield matches for ND.

- NZ Herald

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