Three became two yesterday when New Zealand Cricket cut a test match off the tour by Sri Lanka next summer and replaced it with a couple of Twenty20 internationals.
Already faced by a paucity of test cricket – just three between now and November 2007 – NZC reduced the number further due to concerns about staging three tests in New Zealand conditions before Christmas.
"It meant starting the first test on November 29 and with our weather we were asking for trouble," chief executive Martin Snedden said.
Snedden said the switch also tied in with the side's preparations for the 2007 World Cup in the West Indies in March.
"The focus is clearly on the World Cup and there is a strong view among us that playing the Twenty20 game helps develop certain aspects of the one-day game," Snedden said.
The finer details of the itinerary will be released on Monday but Snedden confirmed it will consist of two tests before Christmas – the first starting on December 7. The first Twenty20 game will be held on December 22 and the second on Boxing Day. The tour will conclude with five one-day games.
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