Ross Taylor completed a rapid rehabilitation from eye surgery to be named Thursday in the New Zealand squad for the two-Test series against Bangladesh starting next week.
Taylor had a small, benign growth removed from his left eye following the series against Pakistan in late November, in which he ended a run of low scores with a century in the second and final Test.
Four weeks after the operation he was playing domestic cricket again, and New Zealand selector Gavin Larsen said the 32-year-old had earned his return to the Test line-up.
“It’s great to have Ross back. He has a phenomenal record that speaks for itself and he’s coming off a terrific hundred in his last Test,” Larsen said.
“He’s obviously been an essential part of our Test side for a long time and brings invaluable experience and knowledge to the group.”
Taylor has compiled 16 Test centuries and needs only one more to equal the New Zealand record held by the late Martin Crowe.
Henry Nicholls gets another chance to press his claims for the number five slot, despite averaging less than 25 from his 14 Test innings, while Colin de Grandhomme and Jeet Raval have been retained after promising starts to their Test careers against Pakistan.
“We’ve still got some relatively new players in the squad and playing in home conditions gives them a great opportunity to further their experience on the international stage,” Larsen said.
Mitchell Santner is the sole spin option, with Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Neil Wagner and Matt Henry competing for the seamer roles.
The first Test starts in Wellington on January 12.
New Zealand squad: Kane Williamson (capt), Trent Boult, Dean Brownlie, Colin de Grandhomme, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Jeet Raval, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling