Who's getting the next call to keep wickets for the New Zealand T20 cricket side? Derek de Boorder, Dane Cleaver or Cam Fletcher? What about Tom Latham or BJ Watling? Perhaps Luke Ronchi could be coerced into a comeback?

Anyone who's gloved the ball soundly behind the sticks and thumped runs at better than a run a ball should have the gear-bag ready for a call from national coach Mike Hesson or fellow selector Gavin Larsen.

While the batting and bowling has wavered through three defeats against Pakistan and then Australia without significant consequences, keeping wickets has become the most vulnerable job in the side.

Glenn Phillips was shown the door for the final T20 with Pakistan before his replacement Tom Blundell got two games before he was traded in for Tim Seifert for Tuesday night's match against England.


Seifert's promotion comes with the inevitable compliments about his quickflash T20 ton and a strike rate threatening 150 but also unanswered questions about why those attributes did not push him into the side much earlier. The replies are probably as blurred as much of the theory around the truncated game.

Chat about unity, loyalty and group strength have taken on a shabby look with the wicketkeeping carousel. Defeats will provoke unkind reactions in any sport that courts so much public attention, especially when the outcome runs against other issues New Zealand have put under the blowtorch. Everything was rosy when the flimsy Windies side and an uncertain Pakistan were put in a headlock but that has been replaced by confusion after Pakistan wriggled free to claim the T20 series, then Australia clamped New Zealand's wheels at the SCG.

The squeeze for answers goes into a fourth inquiry next week against England in Wellington, with Seifert fingered as one of the saviours. There's been nothing from on high or from commentators telling us Seifert will make any difference behind the sticks, so his batting has to be the point of difference. Hope the selectors have got that sorted.

In the T20s, they watched Phillips bat at three, four, six, three and five until he was spelled. Blundell came in at nine then six (ahead of Colin de Grandhomme) before he was traded for Seifert.

Picking up ideas about Australia and England will be on the menu after Glenn Maxwell's century highlighted Australia's chase to beat England at Hobart and their return meeting tonight at the MCG.

Maybe Maxwell is the message. He is the leading run-scorer in the Sheffield Shield and while he has not broken back at test and one-day level, he is a point of T20 difference with his off-spin and sharp fielding.

He had plenty of batting fortune when England shelled an easy outfield catch, then a decision on a Martin Snedden-type catch was reversed in his favour. Other miscues found safe landing zones but Maxwell's array of shots and strike-rate under pressure rescued Australia's night.

Just before Christmas, Seifert lit up the opening round of the domestic T20 series with a pyrotechnic record ton off 40 balls at Mt Maunganui. That blast failed to burn a hole through the selectors' notebooks but it must have lit the fuse for ignition at the Basin.