The Black Caps have been hit by a double injury blow ahead of their second test against England, with Trent Boult and Colin de Grandhomme both being ruled out due to injury.
Boult, who could only bowl one over on the final day of the Black Caps' win by an innings and 65 runs in Mount Maunganui, went for an MRI scan yesterday, which confirmed he had strained one of the muscles overlying his ribs on his right hand-side, but cleared him of any bone stress.
He will miss the test starting on Friday at Seddon Park, as will de Grandhomme, who sustained a tear to his left lower abdominal muscle during the second innings, which saw him not bowl after lunch.
The pair will begin rehabiliation with an aim to be fit for the Black Caps' first test against Australia in Perth on December 12, and Black Caps bowling coach Shane Jurgensen was hopeful both can recover in time.
"It's as good as what it could be, and hopefully they won't be out for too long.
"[Boult's injury] is quite a unique bowling injury that's not been seen much before, but fingers crossed it will be a quick rehab.
"We want them to be on the plane to go to Perth, so we're certainly working towards that, but the initial plan is really just rest and rehab."
Northern Districts all-rounder Daryl Mitchell has been called into the test squad as de Grandhomme's replacement, and will join the Black Caps today along with Lockie Ferguson and Todd Astle, who have rejoined the test squad after being released to play domestic one-day cricket.
Mitchell, who has played nine Twenty20 internationals for the Black Caps, hit an unbeaten 170 for Northern Districts in his last Plunket Shield match, and played for New Zealand A against England in their warm-up match, taking 2-34 and contributing scores of 19 not out and 22 with the bat.
He most recently took 3-54 and hit an unbeaten 62 from 54 balls to lead ND to a one-day win over Central Districts on Monday.
A powerful batsman with good technique who likes to hit the ball straight, Mitchell averages 35.6 with the bat in first-class cricket, and 33.5 with the ball, having taken 61 first-class wickets with his medium-pace offerings.
He would be a like-for-like swap with de Grandhomme, though Black Caps coach Gary Stead could opt for an extra batsman in Tom Blundell, or play four seamers or two spinners, with Mitchell Santner promoted to bat at No 7.
Jurgensen was certain Mitchell has the skills to replace de Grandhomme's all-round production.
"It's a really fantastic opportunity for Daryl, if he's selected for this test he'd probably take a similar role – I certainly think he's got the capability to do what Colin's been able to do."
Boult's ailment seemingly opens up a spot for Ferguson to make his much-anticipated test debut in a seam bowling trio alongside Tim Southee and Neil Wagner, but with Matt Henry also an option, Jurgensen wasn't keen to make any assertions just yet.
"All options will be considered – [Henry] has done a really good job for the team and is a genuine new-ball bowler, and so is Lockie. We'll look at the pitch and see what our best lineup is."