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Neil Wagner finally available for Black Caps

Published: 6:59PM Thursday April 19, 2012 Source: ONE Sport

  • Neil Wagner (Source: Photosport)
    Neil Wagner - Source: Photosport

The International Cricket Council has confirmed that Neil Wagner is now available for selection for the Black Caps after a positive ruling on two applications for exceptional circumstances.

The regulations state that a player must reside in the relevant country for a minimum of 183 days for four consecutive years to qualify.

Wagner, 26, moved to New Zealand in 2008 but missed the required number of days on two occasions - once due to his participation in the Champions League while representing the Otago Volts and the other for a family wedding.

New Zealand Cricket, on behalf of Wagner, submitted applications to The Exceptional Circumstances Committee who then made a recommendation to the ICC Cricket Committee Chairman, Clive Lloyd.

Approval was given for both occasions meaning the South African born player is now available for selection by New Zealand.

Which is good news for a Black Caps' attack that still relies heavily on 37-year-old veteran Chris Martin.

Wagner's excellent first-class record for Otago - 137 wickets at 27.27 including six five-wicket bags - could see him rushed into the Black Caps' squad for the next international assignments which include tours to the West Indies and India, before the ICC Twenty20 World Cup in Sri Lanka, in September.

Of those dismissals, 88 have come in the last two seasons where he also topped the country's wicket count.

If selected, Wagner would join a growing list of recently capped New Zealand players born in South Africa.

Wicketkeeper batsman BJ Watling and wicketkeeper Kruger van Wyk both played Tests earlier this year, while all rounder Grant Elliott played for New Zealand in 2008 and 2009.