Auckland Aces batsman Glenn Phillips is flying to Sydney this evening to join the BLACKCAPS as batting cover for tomorrow’s third and final Test against Australia at the SCG.
It’s the 23-year-old’s first call-up to the Test squad and comes as Kane Williamson and Henry Nicholls continue to battle viral infections which have prevented them from training the past couple of days.
First training of 2020 underway at the SCG 🏏— BLACKCAPS (@BLACKCAPS) December 31, 2019
Welcome to Will Somerville who is in camp and twirling a few down.
Williamson & Nicholls absent with flu like symptoms #AUSvNZ #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/D8uoamRcTw
Phillips has made a strong start to the 2019-20 season by scoring centuries in all three formats, including an impressive First-Class hundred against the star-studded England Test side in Whangarei in November.
BLACKCAPS coach Gary Stead stressed Phillips’ inclusion was precautionary and they were still hopeful both sick players would be fit.
“We’ve obviously got a few balls up in the air at the moment and we want to be on the safe side and have options,” Stead said.
“Glenn has been in terrific form this season and has good versatility with where he can bat and the roles he can play.
“He’s been around the BLACKCAPS T20 team for the past couple of years so should feel comfortable in the environment.
“We’re still hopeful Henry and Kane will pull through and we will give them every chance to prove their fitness.
“If one or both are ruled out then we will consider our options and most importantly how they balance the side for this final Test.”
Phillips holds an impressive First-Class average of 42.5 with four centuries to his name and has previously played 11 T20 Internationals for the BLACKCAPS.