New Zealand sweat over Watling and Anderson

"BJ's not 100%, clearly his knee is still an issue"

“BJ’s not 100%, clearly his knee is still an issue”

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

New Zealand head coach Mike Hesson has admitted that he is unsure whether wicketkeeper-batsman BJ Watling and all-rounder Corey Anderson will be fit to play the second Test against England at Headingley on Friday.

Watling injured his knee during the first day of the first Test at Lord’s, which England won by 124 runs, while Anderson is nursing a back injury.

Since Watling was injured on the first day, opening batsman Tom Latham had to replace him behind the stumps. However, Watling did excel as a batsman as he scored an unbeaten 61 in the first innings and 59 in the second.

“BJ’s not 100%, clearly his knee is still an issue,” Hesson said. “He struggles to push off and get a lot of power so he’s a 50-50 at this stage. From Corey’s perspective bowling was painful and so was fielding so we’ll need to monitor that.”

Hesson also offered some words of support for spinner Mark Craig and pace bowler Tim Southee, who conceded 266 runs in the first Test, which is the most ever by a New Zealand bowler in Test history.

“Mark didn’t have his best Test, that’s fair, but he’s played nine Tests and won us three so he’s a very important member of our squad and he’ll be better off after this,” Hesson said. “I also felt he got better as the game went on. Tim bowled some great spells and I think he suffered as we were a bowler light and had to bowl a heck of a lot more overs.”

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