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Bracewell misses out on cricket contract

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 23/06/2017

Test bowler Doug Bracewell has missed out on a New Zealand Cricket contract after struggling with a knee injury since late last year, Black Caps selector Gavin Larsen says.

Bracewell is joined by off-spinner Mark Craig in not having his NZC contract renewed.

Larsen said Bracewell's absence from the list was influenced by the injury he sustained in December, cutting back his opportunities for game time and allowing others to overtake him.

Bracewell was last month sentenced to 100 hours of community work after being caught driving at more than three times over the legal breath-alcohol limit.

It was his third drink-driving offence.

"Doug is still viewed very positively by the selectors and has a big year in front of him in terms of bouncing back from his injury and proving his worth," Larsen said.

"It's been a difficult time for him since the knee injury but we're all hopeful he'll make a full and sustainable recovery."

Colin de Grandhomme, Jeet Raval and Neil Broom are the new names on this year's list.

Larsen said de Grandhomme, Raval and Broom were all deserving of their contract offers following productive spells for the Black Caps last summer.

"Colin made a breakthrough last summer and is rated well in all three formats; Jeet's Test numbers speak for themselves," Larsen said.

"Neil, as well as averaging 43 in ODI cricket (with a strike-rate of 90) since his recall, is also seen as viable cover for the Test team's middle-order."

With wicket-keeper Luke Ronchi recently announcing his retirement from international cricket, BJ Watling is the only specialist wicket-keeper offered a central contract.

Spin bowler Jeetan Patel, who made himself available for a number of recent Black Caps Tests and ODIs, including the Champions Trophy squad, was not considered for a central contract offer.

"It was agreed the time was right for Jeetan to focus on Warwickshire, so as to allow plenty of opportunity for others to stake their claims ahead of the 2019 World Cup," Larsen said

"We enjoyed having Jeetan's experience and skill over recent times but we're into a new cycle now and we're committed to bringing other players through."

A set criteria is used to rank players across all three forms of the game, with Tests receiving twice the weighting of ODIs and Twenty20 internationals.

Players offered central contracts for 2017-18: Corey Anderson, Trent Boult, Neil Broom, Colin de Grandhomme, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Mitchell McClenaghan, Adam Milne, Colin Munro, Henry Nicholls, James Neesham, Jeet Raval, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling, Kane Williamson, George Worker.

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