Luke Ronchi to become a duel-international representative for one-day series.
Former Australian player Luke Ronchi will today complete an unusual feat in modern cricket when he takes his place behind the stumps for New Zealand.
Born in Dannevirke on New Zealand’s north island, the 32-year-old wicketkeeper/batsman moved with his family to Australia as a boy.
Ronchi went on to represent Western Australia at state level and his new country in three one-dayers and four Twenty20s.
But with Matthew Wade and Brad Haddin in front of him restricting opportunities barring injury, Ronchi returned to his country of birth and began the qualification process.
Now Ronchi will take the gloves for the Black Caps one-day series against England, starting today at Lords.
“I moved to Australia just before I turned seven, played most of my career here until I moved back home a year ago,” Ronchi said.
“It’s interesting, I don’t think anyone’s done it before. If I didn’t try it in New Zealand I’d regret not doing it.”
Ronchi admitted to feeling nerves more than he should at times during his playing career, but said he was excited about debuting for his country of birth at the ‘home of cricket’.
“Everyone wants to play here so to debut here is awesome. I’ve only watched cricket here in the past,” he said.
“It (nerves) was a big problem of mine for a long time. I’ve had bad years where I’ve thought it’s not going to get worse than this and sometimes you go out and enjoy it.
“You’re still going to get nervous but whatever you’ve done getting to this point has been good.”
New Zealand will be hoping a change of format will help them as their batting was well below standard in their recent Test series against England, with several collapses stunting their chances of victory.