New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White has poured cold water on rumours that fast bowler Tim Southee is set to be made Black Caps vice-captain.
Speculation was rife on radio and social media yesterday that the 24-year-old medium-pace bowler would be named new skipper Brendon McCullum's deputy for the South African tour.
Yet White told the Sunday Star-Times he was unaware of the rumours, and that a decision on who would be the Black Caps vice-captain was yet to be made - or even if one would be appointed at all.
"That's the first I've heard of it," White said.
"No decisions have been made over the vice-captaincy or even whether to have a vice-captain, so it is all news to me."
In the absence of sacked skipper Ross Taylor, many see Kane Williamson, who has captained New Zealand in international Twenty20 and one-day cricket, as the best-credentialled candidate for vice-captain.
Nathan McCullum could also be a possibility for deputy. Taylor revealed last week that coach Mike Hesson had suggested to him in Sri Lanka that the Otago allrounder could be suited to the captaincy role in the short-form game.
White said he was yet to speak to Hesson or director of cricket John Buchanan about a vice-captain's appointment.
The chief executive did say the decision on who would be chosen would come down to Hesson.
"Obviously, it's the coach's call," White said.
"But it's the first I've heard about it. It hasn't been discussed. It's just speculation."
Buchanan did not respond to Sunday Star-Times calls inquiring about who would be McCullum's deputy.
New Zealand's first Twenty20 international is in Durban next Friday.
- © Fairfax NZ News