New Zealand are set to hand a debut to Wellington wicketkeeper-batter Jess McFadyen in the upcoming home series against Bangladesh, after she was named in the 15-member squad for the three T20Is and ODIs. McFadyen's selection in place of fellow wicketkeeper Izzy Gaze, who is India with the Under-19 team, was the only change to the squad that had recently toured the West Indies.
Coach Ben Sawyer said playing Bangladesh would be a great opportunity for McFadyen, especially with the T20 World Cup to be held next year.
"Debuting for your country is always a special moment, so we're delighted to be welcoming Jess into the side for what will be an exciting series," Sawyer said. "Jess brings great energy - when we worked together at the Commonwealth Games, I was really impressed with what she brought to the team environment - and she has good experience with the bat, especially in that middle order."
"We used the recent series in the West Indies to try different combinations with bat and ball and we also want to do that with the wicketkeepers; we want to see what Jess can bring to the team," Sawyer said. "We're also in a fortunate position that we have a New Zealand Development team touring India, which Izzy (Gaze) is involved in, so we're able to give both players experience in different conditions and against different opposition."
McFadyen herself was eyeing a spot for the T20 World Cup, looking to "put her name forward" for the big tournament after missing out on a debut in the Commonwealth Games in England.
"Ben was there as well... to be in that environment, see how he wanted to run things and to spend time with the established players - they are world class," McFadyen said. "I am lucky to be playing for [Wellington] Blaze, and have a dozen of them around me for training. [I am] super lucky to have those experiences."
Both the T20I and ODI sides will be led by Sophie Devine, with pace bowler Lea Tahuhu and batter Georgia Plimmer named in the T20I squad only, while seamers Hannah Rowe and Molly Penfold picked just for the ODIs.
It will be New Zealand's last official series before the T20 World Cup next year in South Africa.
"Over the last couple of months we've put together a blueprint of how we want to play, particularly in the T20 format, with an eye on the World Cup next year," Sawyer said. "This tour will be a great opportunity to continue working and refining those plans and making any necessary adjustments.
The series against Bangladesh begins with the first T20I on December 2 in Christchurch, with Dunedin and Queenstown to host the other T20Is. The ODIs begin on December 11 in Wellington, before Napier and Hamilton stage the last two matches of the tour. The series will be the first time Bangladesh play a bilateral series in New Zealand but will be their second visit this year, following the World Cup in March.
Squad: Sophie Devine (capt), Suzie Bates, Eden Carson, Lauren Down, Maddy Green, Brooke Halliday, Hayley Jensen, Fran Jonas, Amelia Kerr, Jess Kerr, Jess McFadyen, Molly Penfold (ODIs only), Hannah Rowe (ODIs only), Georgia Plimmer (T20Is only), Lea Tahuhu (T20Is only)