Black Caps still without Watling

05 December 2017 05:26:47 EST

BJ Watling remains out of New Zealand's side for the second Test against West Indies.

But the Black Caps have been boosted by the inclusion of fast bowler Tim Southee, who missed the victory in the series-opener to be at the birth of his second child.

Coach Mike Hesson says while Watling's hip doesn't require surgery, his recovery may take some time.

In the meantime Tom Blundell will keep wicket for the Black Caps, having risen to the challenge on his debut in the first Test at the Basin Reserve.

It's slow going. He had a bit of a break over winter, things were looking good, but keeping is tough on the body and he certainly feels it.

Mike Hesson

He scored an unbeaten century on debut to help the hosts build a massive first-innings lead.

If that kind of form continues then it would be difficult for New Zealand to leave him out, though coach Mike Hesson is contemplating both Watling and Blundell playing together in future.

The Black Caps would consider using injury-plagued Watling as a specialist batsman, he said.

Hesson knows what Watling is capable of, and his value to the side.

"Absolutely. His record with the bat in recent times certainly suggests that, but at the moment he isn't able to take a full part in the field," said the coach.

Speaking of Watling's hip, Hesson added: "It's slow going. He had a bit of a break over winter, things were looking good, but keeping is tough on the body and he certainly feels it."

Southee is available again and replaces George Worker in the squad, while Lockie Ferguson will rejoin the squad ahead of the second Test after playing in the Ford Trophy one-day competition.

New Zealand are 2/7 to win the second Test against West Indies, who are 11/1 with the draw 4/1.

The Black Caps are 2/7 to have a first innings lead.

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