Fast bowler Peter George has been called into the Australian squad as cover for Ryan Harris, who is nursing a side soreness, for the first Test against New Zealand commencing in Wellington from Friday.

Ryan Harris is currently suffering some side soreness following the completion of the one-day component of the tour.

George has been added as a stand-by player for the first Test of the tour only, a Cricket Australia release said on Wednesday.

The 23-year-old South Australian bowler has produced good performances in the country’s domestic circuit and finished second on the Sheffield Shield wicket list with 36 at 30.44.

“Ryan Harris reported some left side soreness after the fourth ODI of the current series against New Zealand. Since then he has improved significantly and has bowled at low intensity for the last two training days.

“However due to the inclement weather he was unable to bowl outdoors as planned, and therefore it is not clear if he will be available for the first Test match. The plan is he will bowl again outdoors on Thursday and hopefully be passed fit to play,” Australian physiotherapist Alex Kountouris said.

National Selection Panel chief Andrew Hilditch said: “Peter George is an exciting young fast bowler, who has a very good Sheffield Shield season with South Australia.

“The NSP believes that should the opportunity arise, Peter has the skills to succeed at this level and will benefit greatly from being around the Australian set up.”

The second and final match of the two-Test series will be held in Hamilton from March 27.

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