Kane Williamson ruled out of 2nd Test against England, Tom Latham to replace him as Kiwi skipper

New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson has been ruled out of the second Test against England, starting June 10, with an elbow injury. Wicketkeeper and opening batsman Tom Latham will lead the team in his absence while Will Young will replace him in the playing XI.

In some relief to New Zealand fans, however, the charismatic leader is expected to be fit for the World Test Championship (WTC) final against India from June 18.

While announcing the news, Black Caps coach Garry Stead said Kane Williamson had taken an injection to help with ‘irritation’ while batting.

“It’s not an easy decision for Kane to have to miss a Test, but we think it’s the right one. He’s had an injection in his elbow to relieve the irritation he’s been experiencing when he bats and a period of rest and rehabilitation will help maximise his recovery. The decision has been made very much with the ICC World Test Championship Final at Southampton in mind and we are confident he will be ready for that match.”

Will Young, 28, has been with the New Zealand Test squad for a long time now. The right-handed batsman has played two Tests so far and made 48 runs at an average of 24.

Young has also featured in 85 first-class matches and scored over 5000 runs at 42.64. Latham has captained the team in two Tests, winning one and losing the other.

Kane Williamson remains top Test batsman

Despite scoring just 14 runs in the first Test, Kane Williamson maintains his lead in the ICC Test rankings for batsmen.

With 895 points, he sits comfortably ahead of Steve Smith, Marnus Labuschagne, Joe Root, and Virat Kohli in the top five in rankings that were updated on Wednesday.

Although the second Test doesn’t carry any points in the next WTC cycle, New Zealand would have loved a match-winning knock from their skipper ahead of the summit clash.

Spinner Ajaz Patel, all-rounder Daryl Mitchell and Trent Boult are also expected to figure in the Kiwi team for the second Test as the visitors look to manage the workload of their key players.

The match will kick off on Thursday morning at Edgbaston.

Edited by Arjun Panchadar

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