Franklin called up to replace Bennett in NZ squad

Wellington: Veteran all-rounder James Franklin on Tuesday replaced the injured Hamish Bennett in New Zealand’s squad for the remaining two Tests of the ongoing three-match series against India.

“New Zealand Cricket has advised that James Franklin has been called into the Blackcaps squad for the remainder of the Test series in India, replacing the injured Hamish Bennett,” the NZC said in a statement.

Bennett injured his groin while bowling on day one of the drawn first Test in Ahmedabad.

“Due to the short turn around between games it was decided it is in Bennett’s best interests to return to New Zealand to undergo further testing and rehabilitation,” the NZC said.

“It’s an unfortunate injury for Hamish, which will see him miss the remainder of the Test series against India. However, it does create another opportunity for James Franklin to come back into the Blackcaps squad,” added coach Mark Greatbatch.

The 30-year-old Franklin’s last Test appearance for New Zealand came in April 2009 against India here.

“Franklin showed good form with bat and ball in Zimbabwe where he successfully led New Zealand A to a series win.

“In view of the injury to Hamish and some concerns about Jesse’s ability to bowl in the next match the selectors made the decision to go with an all-rounder,” said Greatbatch.

Franklin will reach Hyderabad tomorrow with the second Test starting on Friday.