Auckland, March 24 (IANS) Rachin Ravindra and Chad Bowes will make their ODI debuts for New Zealand in the first match of the three-match series Sri Lanka at Eden Park here on Saturday, ODI skipper Tom Latham has revealed.
Latham said on Friday that Bowes will open the innings with Finn Allen while spin-bowling allrounder Rachin Ravindra will be slotted in at number 7. The Day/Night limited overs match is raising money for the Red Cross NZ Disaster Relief Fund.
New Zealand start as the favourite after blanking Sri Lanka 2-0 in the preceding Test series and preventing the Islanders from making it to World Test Championship Final to be played on June 7 at The Oval in London.
New Zealand dominated the ODI series but are going into the limited overs series after being blanked 3-0 by India in November 2022. They had reached India after winning 2-1 in the preceding series in Pakistan.
Meanwhile, the Black Caps were dealt a blow ahead of the first ODI with seamer Lockie Ferguson unavailable to play due to injury.
Ferguson was scheduled to only play in the opening match before leaving for the Indian Premier League (IPL) along with Finn Allen and Glenn Phillips. But Ferguson suffered a hamstring injury and failed a fitness test, he will no longer be part of the ODI series against Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka on their part will be hoping to win the ODI series to make up for the disappointment of being blanked in the Tests. They had started well in the first Test before their campaign went off the rail.
With the ODI World Cup scheduled in India in October-November this year, winning the ODIs series will be a big boost ahead of the mega event.
The second ODI will be played at Christchurch on March 28 and the third at Hamilton on March 31. The teams will then engage in three T20Is on April 2 (Auckland), April 5 (Dunedin) and April 8 (Queenstown).