Coach Gary Stead said that he had spoken to the opening batter about where he stands
“Extremely gutted to miss out on this, was definitely a goal of mine that I wanted to tick off,” Munro posted on his Instagram Stories when the squad was named. “Looks like I my [sic] have played my last game for [the Blackcaps] not by choice.”
Munro, who has 1724 T20I runs at 31.34 with a strike-rate of 156.44, last played for New Zealand in February 2020 and lost his central contract later that year. He has remained a consistent performer in leagues around the world with strong returns in the PSL, CPL, BBL and currently the Hundred. Overall in that period he has averaged 37.94 with a strike-rate of 140.21.
However, Munro made himself unavailable for either of New Zealand’s pre-World Cup series in Bangladesh and Pakistan, while the emergence of Devon Conway, Glenn Phillips and Tim Seifert – plus the versatility of Mark Chapman – has left no room in the batting order.
“I’m pleased he’s frustrated. When you have a lot of quality players around, you can’t fit everyone into 15 players. It’s a call we’ve had to make. I’ve spoken to Colin about a week ago and he’s clear on where he sits.”
Eight of the World Cup squad, plus Finn Allen, will be part of the IPL resumption that leads into the World Cup, with Stead hoping that their participation can bring valuable insight.
“For the players, absolutely ideal, they are playing on the three grounds that we’ll be playing our World Cup games at,” he said. “Hopefully the intelligence we can collect from there and piecing that into the way we want to play all comes together. But it’s really good we have eight, nine, ten players and support staff over there that can bring stuff back to the table.”
Overall, New Zealand have selected 32 players across their various squads with the group for the India Test matches to be named later in the year. Ross Taylor, who did not make the World Cup squad and will remain at home to avoid an extra quarantine for a week of ODIs in Pakistan, and Neil Wagner can be expected to be involved in those.
“From what I can remember, this would be strongest point from a selection perspective,” Stead said. “When you think about the big picture I think that’s exciting.”