Ryan Duffy not wanted for Auckland tie
Otago Volts coach Vaughn Johnson says Southland's Ryan Duffy is very close but won't be called up to play in their four-day game against Auckland starting tomorrow.
A squad of 14 would be trimmed depending on the state of the University Oval pitch come game day, Johnson said yesterday.
Opener Hamish Rutherford and seamer Ian Butler are both missing because of international commitments, but Jimmy Neesham comes back into contention after being away playing for the New Zealand XI.
With Rutherford's absence, Duffy was regarded as a chance to join his younger brother, Jacob, in the Volts setup and fill the vacant opener's spot.
Duffy impressed playing for Otago A against Tasmania A recently, passing 50 in all three knocks, including an unbeaten 118.
However, instead of bringing in opener Duffy the selectors have stuck with current squad members and will move someone up the order to open the batting with Aaron Redmond.
The Volts coach said Duffy had come into contention and was very much on the radar depending on what happened in the next weeks.
"Ryan's certainly been spoken about after his form against Tasmania, and it may well be that he gets a go. I'm not sure about this one but he's not far away with the scores he's put on the board," Johnson said.
The Volts have had a week off and will come in fresh ready for the all-important round-nine fixture against Auckland.
Otago are second on points with just two games to play as they look to add the Plunket Shield title to the HRV Cup Twenty20 competition they won.
Johnson said they had welcomed the small break in what was a busy schedule and his charges were now ready to do the business.
"It was good to have a break. I've heard from one or two of them this week, in terms of freshening up people like Aaron Redmond and one or two that are carrying little niggles."
Derek de Boorder (capt), Aaron Redmond, Michael Bracewell, Neil Broom, Darren Broom, Sam Wells, Jimmy Neesham, Ian Robertson, Mark Craig, Jacob Duffy, Nick Beard, Blair Soper, James McMillian, Neil Wagner (three to be omitted).
The Southland Times