All-rounder Suzie Bates has been named as the new captain of the New Zealand Women's cricket team following the retirement of Aimee Watkins earlier this year.
Bates has played 40 One-Day Internationals and 34 Twenty20 Internationals including her side's runs to the finals of the 2009 ICC Women's World Cup, 2009 ICC Women's World Twenty20 and 2010 ICC Women's World Twenty20 competitions.
Her first assignment as captain will be against Australia on 20th January when The Rose Bowl series gets underway with the first of five Twenty20 Internationals.
The two sides will play three ODIs before welcoming world champions England later next year.
"Suzie thinks a lot about the game and is quick to offer tactical input during in meetings and out on the field," New Zealand coach Gary Stead said.
"She is a natural leader who has had a positive influence on the younger members of the squad over the past few years and is someone other players look up to. That’s important with the current squad as we go through a rebuilding phase.
"I would like to join the family of cricket in congratulating Suzie on her appointment and also thank Aimee Watkins for the outstanding contribution she made as captain."
Bates, who has captained New Zealand once, against India added:
"It is a truly wonderful privilege to be handed the White Ferns captaincy and was humbled to be offered the job.
"I’m aware of the responsibility that comes with the position and am looking forward to the challenge ahead.
"We have a lot of talent coming through the and am excited by the prospect of leading the young side. It’s an exciting time for the women’s cricket in this country."
© Cricket World 2011