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McCullum, Taylor Heading Home Early

Brendon McCullum, Ross Taylor
Brendon McCullum (left) and Ross Taylor will miss the Sri Lanka series to prepare for the home summer
©REUTERS / Action Images

Brendon McCullum and Ross Taylor have been withdrawn from the limited overs tour of Sri Lanka in order to return home and prepare for home Test series against India and the West Indies.

The pair will head back to New Zealand following the conclusion of the Bangladesh series and be replaced in the squad to tour Sri Lanka by Luke Ronchi and Ian Butler.

“Ross and Brendon need red ball preparation to be at their best for the summer," NationaL Selection Manager Bruce Edgar said.

"Both players are vital to our success and fine tuning their red ball skills before the West Indies series starting in early December is paramount.

"This summer we have 37 days of international cricket at home and Brendon and Ross are expected to play all of these, so it’s essential that we manage their workloads."

Upon their return, the pair are expected to play Plunket Shield cricket and New Zealand XI games before the first Test against the West Indies in Dunedin, which begins on 3rd December.

The West Indies play three Tests, five One-Day Internationals and two Twenty20 Internationals before India arrive for five ODIs and two Tests in January and February 2014.

Ronchi qualified to play for New Zealand earlier this year and has featured in six ODIs for the Black Caps but is yet to score more than 22 runs in one innings.

The more experienced Butler has played 26 ODIs and 19 Twenty20 Internationals.

New Zealand travel to Sri Lanka after the Bangladesh series to play three ODIs and two Twenty20 Internationals between 10th and 21st November.

© Cricket World 2013