New Zealand all-rounder Jimmy Neesham has rejected an offer of a central contract from his board in order to honour his commitment to franchise cricket.

The 31-year-old was not on the list of centrally contracted players but was offered one of two spots that opened up with the departures of Trent Boult and Colin de Grandhomme. But Jimmy Neesham has since turned down that contract offer and will instead continue to play franchise cricket since agreeing to deals with various tournaments.

Neesham is also up for auction in the SA20 league, which will take place on September 19th.

“I know the news of my decision to decline a central contract today will be seen as me choosing money over representing my country,” Neesham posted on Instagram. “I had planned to accept a contract offer in July, however since being left off the list I have committed to other leagues around the world. It was a difficult decision but I have decided to honour those commitments rather than go back on my word to re-sign with NZ Cricket.

“Playing for the [Blackcaps] has been the greatest honour of my career and I remain committed to taking the field with my countrymen for the foreseeable future, especially in pinnacle world events.”

In his stead, NZC has decided to hand deals to Blair Tickner and Finn Allen.

The 23-year-old Allen is a secure pick for the upcoming world cup having scored 334 runs at a strike rate of 169.54 in 13 T20I innings already while Tickner has appeared in six ODIs and 11 T20Is for New Zealand, a number set to only go up with the departure of Boult.

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