Days after cheering England in rugby, New Zealand all-rounder Daryl Mitchell set to play against them in cricket

Days after cheering England in rugby, New Zealand all-rounder Daryl Mitchell set to play against them in cricket

Daryl admitted that he had mixed feelings when England beat New Zealand in the Rugby World Cup.

Daryl Mitchell New Zealand
Daryl Mitchell New Zealand. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

Life has taken a strange turn for Daryl Mitchell, New Zealand batting all-rounder who has represented his country in T20Is so far. Days ago, he was cheering England’s win over the Kiwis at the Rugby World Cup semi-finals as his father John is an assistant coach with the England rugby team working under head coach Eddie Jones. And now, the 28-year-old Daryl has been picked for the New Zealand squad for the second Test against England starting this Friday at Seddon Park, Hamilton.

Daryl, who has played 67 first-class games to score almost 3500 runs with seven hundreds and averages above 35, will replace the injured Colin de Grandhomme. The hosts, however, were yet to decide on whether Mattu Henry or Lockie Ferguson will come in the place of injured seamer Trent Boult. New Zealand, who lost a dramatic World Cup final against England at Lord’s in July, lost the T20I series against the Three Lions 2-3 before making a phenomenal comeback in the first Test in Mount Maunganui to win by an innings and 65 runs.

The Kiwis now look forward to making a clean sweep and senior batsman Ross Taylor said the weather and pitch conditions before the final Test will decide the hosts’ bowling line-up. He also expressed little doubt that Daryl, who has 97 runs from nine T20I outings, would do well in his debut long-format game, cited News18. The fact that Hamilton is his home ground could also make things easier for Daryl.

New Zealand’s player depth “is definitely the best it’s every been in my career”, said Taylor while adding: “When I first started out, when we had a guy on debut we hoped the player would do well but now I think we expect the player to do well.”

Daryl’s playing in a Test will take him ahead of his father

By playing his inaugural Test, Daryl will go a step further than his father who played six mid-week tour games but no Tests for the All Blacks before becoming New Zealand’s coach and helping them finishing third in the 2003 Rugby World Cup in Australia.

Daryl admitted that he had mixed feelings when England beat New Zealand in the Rugby World Cup this year in Japan. England lost the final to South Africa.

“It’s a strange watch, to be fair. Your whole life you grow up supporting the All Blacks, but at the same time you want your old man to do well,” Daryl was quoted as saying by New Zealand’s Stuff.co.nz after England beat New Zealand 19-7.

“At the end of the day, I wanted the old man to do well. To get a chance to win a World Cup final is pretty cool. The whole family is supporting him.”