McCullum Likely To Miss Third ODI

Publish Date
Wednesday, 30 December 2015, 2:08PM


New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum is an unlikely starter for the third ODI against Sri Lanka at Saxton Oval tomorrow.

McCullum damaged a disc in his back diving for a ball on the boundary in Monday's match at Christchurch's Hagley Oval. He didn't bat later that day and did not train today.

A joint has flared more than expected, and the travel, and sitting on aeroplanes hasn't helped.

''He's still pretty sore," coach Mike Hesson said. ''It's unlikely he'll play but he's still a chance.

''Normally we talk about 24 to 48 hours. It's probably closer to 48 than 24. He's certainly improving but unless he's good to go we won't risk him. He's certainly one of those guys that if there's a chance he can play he'd like to."

McCullum crashed heavily into advertising hoardings, in an example of his trademark desperation in the outfield.

There have been close shaves in recent years from which the skipper has emerged unscathed. But Hesson doesn't believe McCullum should dial back the outfield determination.

''No, that's been a huge part of our change in culture in the last couple of years, his intensity in the field and the fact he sets the standard.

''We don't do things by halves. We're fully committed in the field. If an injury occurs then so be it. But we have changed our standards in the field and it's something we want to keep."

Hesson is confident fast bowler Adam Milne, who sat out the second game with a heel niggle, will be ready to play tomorrow, Hesson added.

Kane Williamson, who has missed the first two games in the series with a sore knee, is expected to play and will lead the side tomorrow if McCullum doesn't make a rapid recovery.

NZ Herald

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