Neesham makes the cut in NZ's World Cup squad


Wellington, Sept. 12: Allrounder Jimmy Neesham, who played a key role in the thrilling final of the 2019 Cricket World Cup, has been included in New Zealand's 15-man squad for this year's tournament in India.

Neesham was chosen to bat for New Zealand in the Super Over which was required to decide the winner of the last World Cup final against England at Lord's. The teams still were tied after the Super Over and England took the world title on a countback of boundaries.

Neesham and fast bowler Trent Boult, who also played in that match, both were included Monday in the New Zealand squad despite not being on list of centrally contracted players.

Kane Williamson will captain the New Zealand team, though he is still recovering from the serious knee injury he sustained during the Indian Premier League in April. It is not yet known when Williamson will be fit to play.

Williamson and fast bowler Tim Southee have been selected for their fourth World Cups. Spin bowling allrounder Rachin Ravindra, Mark Chapman, Devon Conway, Daryl Mitchell, Glenn Phillips and Will Young will be playing at a 50-overs World Cup for the first time. Boult, Matt Henry and vice-captain Tom Latham will be playing at their third World Cups.

"From Kane and Tim heading to their fourth tournament to the guys selected for the first time it's always a very exciting time," head coach Gary Stead said. "There have been some tough calls and there will be some disappointed players.

New Zealand will play Pakistan in a warm-up match at Hyderabad on Sept. 29 ahead of the tournament start on Oct. 5.

England beat New Zealand 

Liam Livingstone's unbeaten 95 powered England to a 79-run win over New Zealand in the second one-day international in Southampton on Sunday.

England, who begin the defence of their World Cup title against New Zealand in Ahmedabad on October 5, collapsed to 8-3 in a match reduced by rain to 34 overs per side.

They were still struggling at 55-5 in the 13th over when Livingstone came into bat.

But he took England to 226-7 and New Zealand were then dismissed for 147 as the hosts levelled the four-match series at 1-1

Reece Topley, whose 3-27 ended a wait of over a year for an ODI wicket, and fellow left-arm quick David Willey (3-34) did the damage with the ball.

New Zealand great Trent Boult had marked his 100th ODI -- and first in nearly a year -- by taking the first three England wickets wickets to fall, the veteran left-arm quick removing Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root and Ben Stokes.

But Livingstone's career-best ODI innings, a tribute to his composure as much as his celebrated hitting power, bolstered the total and enhanced his prospects of selection for England's final 15-man World Cup squad.

Sam Curran (42) offered fellow all-rounder Livingstone excellent support in a sixth-wicket stand of 112 in 77 balls. (AP)

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