Wellington, Feb 4 : Unable to recover from back injury sustained New Zealand opener Martin Guptil on Monday was ruled out of the upcoming three-match Twenty20 series.
Guptill did not play the fifth and the final ODI against India at Wellington as tourists won by 35 runs clinching the series 4-1. Meanwhile, all-rounder Jimmy Neesham who was not part of T20 squad will now replace Guptill for the first game at Wellington's Westpac Stadium on Wednesday.
"Unfortunately Martin hasn't recovered in time for this Twenty20 series which is very condensed with three games over five days," New Zealand coach Gary Stead was quoted as saying by stuff.co.nz.
"It's a shame as he's obviously a big part of our white-ball sides, but we've got to look at the big picture and ensure he gets the injury right," Gary added. Guptil continued to feel pain in his lower back and coach Gary Stead confirmed that he would return to Auckland to rest, with an eye to returning for next week's ODI series against Bangladesh.
The three-match T20 series against India starts on February 6 at Wellington, followed by second match at Auckland's Eden Park on February 8 and the final game at Hamilton on February 10.
In Guptill's absence it is expected that wicketkeeper Tim Seifert would open with Colin Munro. The opener has been one of New Zealand's most consistent performers in the white-ball formats for his country.
In 76 T20Is, he has amassed a world record 2272 runs at an average of 33.91 while striking at 132.71.UNI