Henry next cab off rank in fast bowler choices

MARK GEENTY
Last updated 05:00 31/01/2014
Matt Henry
KIRK HARGREAVES/Fairfax NZ
NEW FACE: Canterbury paceman Matt Henry has earned a callup to the Black Caps squad.

Relevant offers

Cricket

Johnstone: Cricket's version of Bring Back Buck Auckland edge out lead over Knights Hong Kong hope to replace Windies at World Cup Jesse Ryder 'too busy' for Black Caps chance Warner closes in on century in test rescue bid Black Caps know sharp improvement is needed Fast bowling battle heats up for World Cup Greg Dawson wins Canterbury rookies' race Luke Fletcher one to watch, says Franklin Strang: Stop the dot rot and rotate, Guptill

New Zealand's selectors have trumpeted Hamish Bennett and Matt Henry in the same breath for most of the summer, so it was no coincidence both got the callup within a week of each other.

Henry had his first official training session as a Black Caps squad member yesterday after being summoned to Wellington as bowling cover, with Tim Southee to be rested in today's fifth ODI against India. The 22-year-old is unlikely to play, with Mitchell McClenaghan set to return, but donning the black training kit was a pretty good start at the Basin Reserve.

"It was a big surprise but it's a great opportunity and all pretty exciting. I've just got to come here and train and see what happens and prepare like I'm playing," Henry said.

Some people wouldn't take too kindly to being diverted from Gisborne to Wellington at late notice, but not Henry.

He was flying with the Canterbury team on Wednesday to face Northern Districts when he got shoulder-tapped during the stopover at Auckland Airport, and told to head to the capital.

Henry found a friendly face in Bennett, his new ball partner at Canterbury with whom he's scythed through a few top orders this season.

Bennett earned a callup last week with Adam Milne's torn abdominal muscle, and Henry was clearly next cab off the rank. Selector Bruce Edgar had noted how Bennett and Henry bowled at a good clip and had batsmen hopping about in domestic cricket, and the pair's careers have followed similar paths.

Two years ago Henry had major back surgery soon after Bennett which involved repairing a stress fracture with wire.

"Going through the operation he's always been there and been a great support. Fortunately he's here in the team as well. He's been great for me and my learning because he's been around for a lot longer. He's been massive," Henry said.

Henry took 5-67 in his most recent first-class match against Otago last week. His career numbers make compelling reading, with 55 first-class wickets at 22.70. In domestic 50-over cricket he has 37 wickets at 19, and an economy rate of 5.2.

Henry got a taste of the big time when playing for New Zealand A against England last year, and got a New Zealand A tour to the subcontinent.

He's not looking to try anything fancy if he gets a chance.

"You've got to put the ball in a good area. I run in hard and try to bowl as hard as I can. It's not all about the numbers, it's about putting the ball in the right area and bowling hard."

Ad Feedback

- Fairfax Media

Special offers
Opinion poll

Which batting pair would be best at opening in ODIs for the Black Caps?

Martin Guptill and Jimmy Neesham

Martin Guptill and Brendon McCullum

Martin Guptill and Hamish Rutherford

Martin Guptill and Jesse Ryder

Jimmy Neesham and Brendon McCullum

Jimmy Neesham and Hamish Rutherford

Jimmy Neesham and Jesse Ryder

Brendon McCullum and Hamish Rutherford

Brendon McCullum and Jesse Ryder

Hamish Rutherford and Jesse Ryder

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content