Black Caps suffer Bond blow
New Zealand pace bowler Shane Bond will miss the remaining two Tests against Pakistan after suffering an abdominal tear.
Last Updated: 01/12/09 8:28am
New Zealand's hopes of clinching a series win against Pakistan have suffered a heavy blow after strike bowler Shane Bond was ruled out of the remaining two Tests because of injury.
The 34-year-old was discovered to have an abdominal tear in the wake of his man-of-the-match performance last week - his first Test appearance in two years.
Bond suffered some discomfort in Dunedin and an ultrasound subsequently revealed the tear, meaning he will miss the upcoming matches in Wellington and Napier.
"Because I've had an injury there before...I've had aches and pains there for a long time," said Bond, who claimed figures of 8-153 in the opening Test victory.
"When you're going into a Test with four bowlers you just want for your own peace of mind to know that everything is fine.
"During the Test match itself it was fine.
"I just wanted to get it checked out to make sure I wasn't going to let the team down and got a bit of a shock so I'm really disappointed."
However, there was better news regarding Iain O'Brien, who overcame a dislocated the middle finger of his right hand during the final session at University Oval to take two crucial wickets in the 32-run win.
The 33-year-old has been cleared of any fractures and is confident he will be able to play a full part at the Basin Reserve - his home ground.
O'Brien said he was not expecting the injury to affect his delivery in Wellington, although he is likely to have to wear some kind of protection when fielding.
He explained: "It shouldn't affect me letting go of the ball. It's if it comes back at me that could cause me some problems.
"Then just picking the ball up and throwing it in the field I might have to do some work on that and see where it's at."
O'Brien is going to have to assume more responsibility given Bond's absence and his ability to bowl into the wind that often whistles around the Basin Reserve could prove key.
He said: "It's one of the things I do bowling into the wind but there's no real difference between other places (and Wellington). If it's windy it's windy and that's just part of it.
"There were a couple of decent breezes in Dunedin and it was good for me to stand up and bowl into it.
"It's a different deck at the Basin so lengths will change. It's a bit bouncier deck than we've just played on so we may see a few more short balls which should upset a couple of their batters.
"But they've got some bowlers who like to hit the deck as well. It will suit both teams. Hopefully we'll prevail in that regard."
Bond could be replaced by Tim Southee but his absence could also pave the way for Daryl Tuffey - who is already in the squad - to make his first Test start in five years.
Wet weather has forced both teams to practice indoors for the past two days, with Misbah-ul-Haq consequently struggling to adjust to the New Zealand conditions following his arrival from Pakistan.
The 35-year-old is expected to go straight into the side to bolster the slip fielding - where five catches were dropped in the first Test - and the inexperienced batting line-up.
He said: "You can't help the weather. Whatever you have you just have to get the benefit from that.
"That is always a problem for Asian players when they come here because there's a bit more bounce and pace (in the wickets).
"We have to just negotiate these things. I think I'm ready to face these kinds of conditions.
"I'm seeing the ball well and I'm feeling good but when you are playing in different conditions you have to concentrate more."