West Indies chief of selectors, Roger Harper, has revealed that the panel remains in the dark regarding the future of spinner Sunil Narine who remains unavailable for selection.

The 32-year-old Narine is widely regarded as one of the best spinners in the world but has not appeared for the West Indies since 2019.  In total, Narine has played 6 Test matches, where he claimed 21 wickets, 65 One Day Internationals, where he has claimed 92 wickets, and 51 T20 Internationals where he has taken 52.

The player has, however, throughout his career been plagued by questions surrounding his bowling action.  In 2015, Narine was suspended from bowling in international cricket, after his action was deemed to be illegal.  He was reported during the ODI series against Sri Lanka.  He was cleared a year later after doing remedial work on his action.  Narine was reported again during the 2018 Pakistan Super League but was cleared soon after.  Again, in October 2020, the spinner was reported by on-field umpires for his bowling action in the 2020 Indian Premier League, which was cleared by IPL Suspect Bowling Action Committee in September.

According to Harper, at this point, the bowler does not seem comfortable enough with his technique to return to international cricket.

“Sunil Narine has indicated to us that he is not yet ready for the international scene,”
 Harper told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“He was still in the process of fine-tuning his action.  He had some issues with that so he is in the process of fine-tuning it,” he added.

“So, when he makes himself available and thinks that he is ready for international cricket, we will then have to make a determination at that point.”

He might no longer by the captain of the West Indies but Jason Holder still has a lot to contribute to the success of the team going forward.

Opening batsman Kraigg Brathwaite has replaced Jason Holder as West Indies Test captain, Cricket West Indies confirmed tonight.

West Indies opener Kieran Powell remains unavailable for selection after failing to make the team's fitness standard, according to CWI chief selector Roger Harper.

The 30-year-old Powell was surprisingly left out of a team that was hastily arranged after several members of the first team declined to tour Bangladesh.  Many believe Powell capable of being a regular part of the first team.

The Leeward Island’s batsman was the highest runs scorer in the previous season of the Cricket West Indies Super50 tournament.  Powell scored 524 runs with a high score of 121 not out.  He also had two 50s and two 100s.

The player was initially surprised he was not selected to the team to tour England earlier this year, after a strong showing for the season.  He admitted, however, to having failed a fitness test but claimed he was perplexed as others who did not show up for the test or also failed it were still selected.  According to Harper, however, the issue of Powell’s fitness remains a hindrance and formed part of the consideration on this occasion as well.

“Mr. Powell has performed very well, he was the leading runs scorer for the Super50 competition, but he is yet to meet the fitness standard,” Harper told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“Players have been left out of the team for the same reason.  The players we have selected on this squad have all met the fitness standard,” he added.

“Evin Lewis declined the invitation but he too is now available for selection.”

Lewis was dropped from the squad, along with Shimron Hetmyer earlier this year, after failing fitness tests.

 

Cricket West Indies chief of selectors Roger Harper is confident the team will put in a competitive showing, in Bangladesh, despite the absence of several regular first-teamers.

Team captains Jason Holder, Kieron Pollard, and Roston Chase were among 12 players opting not to go on the Bangladesh tour due to Covid-19 concerns.  The list includes Darren Bravo, Shamarh Brooks, Sheldon Cottrell, Evin Lewis, Shai Hope, Shimron Hetmyer, and Nicholas Pooran. Fabian Allen and Shane Dowrich will be unavailable because of personal reasons.

With the first team players missing Kraigg Brathwaite will lead the Test team, with Jermaine Blackwood assigned as his deputy.  Trinidad & Tobago and West Indies A team captain, Jason Mohammed, will lead the ODI team with Sunil Ambris as vice-captain.

 The absence of the A-list players will see Kavem Hodge, a right-handed top-order batsman, called to the Test squad for the first time.  Left-handed opener Shayne Moseley and all-rounder Kyle Mayers will now feature in the first team for the first time, after making trips to England and New Zealand as reserves earlier this year.

Two other players will earn their first call-ups for the ODI squad — Akeal Hosein, a left-arm spinner allrounder; and Kjorn Ottley, a left-handed top-order batsman.

Despite coming off the back of dismal Test performances in England and then New Zealand, where they lost both matches by an innings, Harper believes the desire to prove themselves as good enough to play at the highest level could see the stand-in team put in a strong shift.

“Touring Bangladesh is not easy.  Bangladesh is a team that plays well in its own conditions but I really believe that the group of players that we put together, the squad for both the Test series and ODIs, will be competitive and give a good account of themselves,” Harper told members of the media on Tuesday.

“I think we can come away with some positive results from this series.  Bangladesh plays extremely well in one-day cricket, so the players will have to play well be at the top of their games and make smart decisions,” he added.

 

 The place of talented all-rounder Andre Russell could be in doubt for future West Indies teams after a number of injuries and invitation declines.

Russell was invited to join the team for the upcoming tour of New Zealand but, according to Cricket West Indies (CWI) chief of selectors Roger Harper, declined after claiming he needed space to ‘clear his head’ after having to deal with playing during the COVID-19 pandemic.  The player last represented the West Indies on tour of Sri Lanka earlier this year, where his scintillating 40 from 14 deliveries saw him named man-of-the-match.

Even with such brilliant performances under his thumb, Harper insisted he was keeping an eye on things and that emerging talent could make it difficult for the 32-year-old to continually be selected ‘if they take their opportunities.’

“I think as we move forward we will look at all situations, all players and determine whether we need to continue to look at those players, continue to consider those players, or we need to move on,” Harper told members of the media, from the team’s training camp in New Zealand, in reference to the situation.

“A lot of things are determined by how well the team performs.  How well the players in the team at the time perform, and the success of the team.  I think if players in the team perform exceedingly well, then it will make it difficult for those that are not on the tour to get back into the team. So a lot of things will be taken into consideration as we move forward.”

 

 

Kraigg Brathwaite has been dropped as West Indies Test vice-captain in order for him to be able to concentrate on improving his batting, CWI chief of selectors Roger Harper has revealed.

Brathwaite was replaced as vice-captain by all-rounder Roston Chase and batsman Nicholas Pooran ahead of the start of the team’s tour of New Zealand.  The opener, who was first appointed the Test vice-captain in 2015, had averaged 21 from his last 15 Tests heading into the England series.

He did show signs of a promised recovery with half-centuries in the first Test, where he scored 65 and 75 in the second.  Brathwaite, however, also had scores of 4, 12, 1 and 19 to average 21.  According to Harper, the decision panel is hoping less responsibility will lead to more consistency from the player.

“We thought it important at this time to allow Kraigg Brathwaite, who has been the vice-captain for a while, to just pay a little more attention, to focus a little more on his batting,” Harper told members of the media from the team’s training base in New Zealand.

“He has not been in the best of form for a little while.  I think he began to get himself together on the England tour, we want him to build on this.  We thought the relieving of the responsibility would allow him to focus some more on his batting.”

 

Cricket West Indies (CWI) chief selector Roger Harper insists he is keeping a watchful eye on the situation surrounding all-rounder Andre Russell after the player decided to spurn the team’s invitation to tour New Zealand because he needed time to ‘clear his head.’   

The 32-year-old’s choice could be looked upon as quite a reasonable one given his recent struggles, particularly in this season’s Indian Premier League (IPL).  According to reports, however, Russell was recently drafted to take part in the Lankan Premier League, which will begin on November 21 and roughly take part at the same time as the team’s tour of New Zealand.

 When pressed on the issue, Harper insisted he could not draw any conclusions and could only rely on what he had been told.

“Andre said he needed some time to clear his head.  He wasn’t handling a situation very well, that’s what he said.  How he chooses to clear his head, I can’t determine that,” Harper told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“I don’t know what decision he has made.  Where he is playing or if he is playing.  I can only look and see what he had told me and then look at what happens subsequently,” he added.

“He is free to make those decisions.  We will look to see what the situation is, how it develops, and take it from there,” Harper said.

“What I will say is that it gives a younger player an opportunity and hopefully that player can make the most of it and really do us proud.”

West Indies batsman Nicholas Pooran will have the chance to show off his Test cricket credentials in upcoming First-Class matches during the tour of New Zealand.

Recently, calls have grown louder for the 25-year-old batsman to be included in the team for the game’s longest format.  Pooran has put together a string of impressive performances in both the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) and Indian Premier League (IPL) convincing some, including legendary West Indian batsman Viv Richards, that some of that success can be translated to the four-day format.

The batsman was not picked on the Test squad for next month’s tour but was named as part of the team’s T20 squad.  Despite that, Cricket West Indies (CWI) chief of selectors Roger Harper recently revealed that the matter was being given some serious thought.

“There was a lot of consideration given to Nicholas Pooran; we are still looking at it and I am sure as we move forward, Pooran will have an opportunity as well,” Harper said.

The pair of First-Class matches are expected to take place at the same time as the Test match.  The first Test is scheduled for Hamilton, between December 3-7, with the second booked for Wellington from December 11-15.  Harper indicated that the team will consist of some of the T20 players and Test reserves.

"He is in the T20 squad and he has expressed willingness to play in four-day games that will be available during the tour," Harper said.

So far, Pooran has only played three First-Class matches and he has a top score of 55.  In One Day Internationals (ODIs) he is considered as one of the most talented young batsmen. In 25 matches Pooran has scored 932 runs at an average of 49 with one century and seven fifties. In T20 cricket, he has 14 fifties and one hundred in 146 global matches.

Injury, concerns over safety and a need for a clear head are the reasons behind Evin Lewis, Lendl Simmons and Andre Russell’s decisions not to accept invitations to join the West Indies’ tour of New Zealand starting next month.

The West Indies on Friday named a 14-man squad that is expected to play three T20 Internationals in New Zealand later this year that included Andre Fletcher who was making a return to the squad after a two-year absence as well as Shimron Hetmyer and Darren Bravo. However, it was noticeable that Russell, Lewis and Simmons were absent.

Chief selector Roger Harper explained during a press conference Friday morning that the three batsman gave different reasons why they opted out.

Simmons, he said, decided against travelling after discussions with his family. Lewis, he said, also discussed the issue with family but was also concerned about a injury that needed more time to heal.

Russell, who is currently playing for the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League, said he needed time to clear his head after being in quarantine situations in the Caribbean Premier League and IPL competitions.

“Lendl Simmons and Andre Russell are two very experienced T20 players who performed very well on the last tour of Sri Lanka and their absence will surely be noted,” Harper said in a release from CWI.

However, the respective decisions to decline the invitations to tour will not factor in the selection process to future teams, CWI said.

 

West Indies lead selector Roger Harper said West Indies head coach Phil Simmons and coaches in Barbados are to design a programme that they hope will help Shai Hope rediscover his form and live up to his potential.

Jason Holder and Kieron Pollard are to captain West Indies Test and T20 teams, respectively, while Shai Hope has been dropped for the upcoming tour of New Zealand.

Meanwhile, Andre Russell, Lendl Simmons and Evin Lewis have declined invitations to the T20 squad that has been selected for the tour.

Cricket West Indies (CWI) announced a short while ago, the two squads for the proposed tour of New Zealand which will feature three T20 Internationals and two Test matches from November 27 to December 15.

Details of the tour were ratified by CWI’s Board of Directors during a teleconference on Thursday. The Board agreed to the tour in principle, subject to final details on medical and logistical protocols of CWI, New Zealand Cricket and Government of New Zealand.

Left-handed batsmen Darren Bravo and Shimron Hetmyer have been recalled to the Test team, as well as all-rounder Keemo Paul. Bravo’s highest Test score of 218 came at the University Oval in Dunedin in 2013.

“The return of Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer and Keemo Paul will bolster the team, I expect that Darren will solidify the top-order, hopefully making it more productive, while Shimron gives the squad more options in the middle-order and it is another opportunity for him to show how good a player he is.  Keemo provides another wicket taking seam option,” said Chief Selector Roger Harper.

“The Test team has an opportunity to put into practice the learnings from the tour of England earlier this year.  The team has good all-round depth and I expect them be very competitive. New Zealand is a very good team especially in New Zealand, so we need to be on the top of our game.”

A group of reserves will also travel to help prepare the Test squad during the quarantine period and training camp as well as cover for injuries.

Meanwhile, Andre Fletcher, the experienced wicket-keeper/batsman has been named in the T20I squad for the first time since 2018. There is also a maiden call-up in this format for Kyle Mayers, the all-rounder, who performed well in last month’s Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

“Lendl Simmons and Andre Russell are two very experienced T20 players who performed very well on the last tour of Sri Lanka and their absence will surely be noted.  However, Andre Fletcher has another opportunity to show us what he can do and what he brings to the table,” Harper said.

“The T20I Team is now getting back into the groove after a nine-month absence from international competition. Fortunately, a number of players have been involved in the Indian Premier League (IPL) and before that the CPL, so they have had some competitive cricket leading up to this tour. The structure of the tour with the COVID-19 quarantine period, does not give the team any real opportunity for match practice as a team but there are a number of experienced players in the team so, hopefully, they can adapt quickly. 

“In the build-up to the ICC T20 World Cup, every T20I series is an important opportunity to fine tune the team, to get our personnel, our compositions and combinations right. For our players to become more attuned to their roles and the team to have a greater understanding of what works best in each situation. So, this is a very important series for us from that perspective and also in an effort to improve our rankings.”

The T20Is will be the start of an 11-month schedule of matches building up to the ICC T20 World Cup, rescheduled for October 2021 in India. The proposed schedule for this tour of New Zealand has the defending T20 World Cup champions starting at Eden Park in Auckland under lights.

The CWI Selection Panel indicated that this upcoming series will form part of the overall planning towards defending the ICC World T20 title. The panel outlined that they will continue to monitor closely the progress of spin bowler Sunil Narine and all other players in the lead-up to the global event.

 Test Squad:

Jason Holder (captain), Jermaine Blackwood, Kraigg Brathwaite, Darren Bravo, Shamarh Brooks, John Campbell, Roston Chase, Rahkeem Cornwall, Shane Dowrich, Shannon Gabriel, Shimron Hetmyer, Chemar Holder, Alzarri Joseph, Keemo Paul and Kemar Roach.

 Test Reserves:

Nkrumah Bonner, Joshua DaSilva, Preston McSween, Shayne Moseley, Raymon Reifer, and Jayden Seales.

 T20 International Squad:

Kieron Pollard (captain), Fabian Allen, Dwayne Bravo, Sheldon Cottrell, Andre Fletcher, Shimron Hetmyer, Brandon King, Kyle Mayers, Rovman Powell, Keemo Paul, Nicholas Pooran, Oshane Thomas, Hayden Walsh Jr, and Kesrick Williams.

Cricket West Indies (CWI) chief of selectors, Roger Harper, expects the team’s batting to once again be placed under the microscope when its tour of New Zealand begins next month.

The team’s batsmen faced plenty of criticism in a 2-1 loss to England, earlier this year, and a quick look at the recent batting statistics suggests they may well deserve it.  For the series, the team averaged close to 27.86 and it was one of the best batting performances in a series in recent years.

In fact, it is the fourth-best for the West Indies’ batsmen among all the series consisting of two or more matches since 2017.  Their highest batting average in a Test series consisting of at least two matches since 2017 is 34.66; which came in Zimbabwe in 2017.  Harper knows they will need to do much better to have a chance against the Blackcaps.

  “New Zealand are very competitive, in their own backyard especially.  They play very well as a team.  They plan well and they execute well. We have to be at the top of our game,” Harper told the Mason and Guest radio show.

“Again, a lot of questions will be asked of our batting and that’s the department that needs to step up for us in order for us to have a real chance of getting a positive result in the series,” he added.

The historic England tour ended on a bit of a sour note for the regional team, not only because of a 2-1 loss to the hosts but the manner of the defeat, which represented somewhat of a collapse by the Jason Holder-led unit. Things began brightly with the team putting in a strong all-around performance to secure a four-wicket win in the first Test.

“I’m looking for the team to build on its performance in England.  Winning away Test matches hasn’t been something we have done consistently.  We won one in England and we were positioned to really draw that series comfortably, if not win it, and I’m looking for us to build on that in New Zealand.”

In recent times, the West Indies have not had the best of fortune in New Zealand, where they have lost three of the last four T20 series, with one draw, while losing four of the last five-Test series again managing one draw.

Convener of selectors, Roger Harper, has revealed that Jason Holder will retain the captaincy of the West Indies team for the coming tour New Zealand.

The West Indies will play two Tests against New Zealand in November and according to Harper, there is no reason for a change in the captaincy.

“We have discussed a lot of things and all of those things (leadership) we discussed but I think at this point we’re not thinking of changing the captaincy at all,” Harper said of Holder.

West Indies have won seven of their last 20 Tests and are eighth in the ICC Test rankings. The team was beaten 2-1 in their three-Test series against England in July.

However, Harper said Holder remained the first choice captain since there was a dearth of leadership qualities not only throughout the ranks of the Test side but across the regional game.

“I looked at a lot of the four-day championships. I had the opportunity to see most of the captains on show and I think that there are some decent captains out there but there is also a lot of improvement that can be made,” he said.

“I think some of our captains need to know when to attack, when not to attack, how to defend and how to put pressure on the opposing batsmen and those sort of things. These are the areas we need to improve on.”

Cricket West Indies’ chief selector Roger Harper said that after discussing the upcoming tour of New Zealand with players, there has been no indication that they are not interested.

Harper was responding to questions regarding the upcoming tour that is to run from November 27 to December 15 on i95FM Sports.

During the three-Test tour of England in July, Shimron Hetmyer, Keemo Paul and Darren Bravo declined invitations over concerns about their safety. However, since the tour was successful and the players returned safely, it is likely that all players selected will take up the chance to travel to New Zealand next month.

“There was a briefing recently where the players were informed of what is taking place, what measures have been put in place, what protocols will obtain during the tour,” Harper said. “And when we look at finalizing the squad, we’ll discuss with them whether they are willing to tour or not. At this point, we’ve not had a definite indication from anyone that they’re not interested.”

Harper revealed that the selection process for the squads will begin sometime next week for the three T20 matches and two Tests the West Indies are scheduled to play.

“There’ll be a T20 International team and, of course, the Test team and as usual now, we’ll be taking some reserve players on tour which will serve to provide backup players if needed during the tour as well as provide practice players,” Harper said.

“What is likely to happen because of scheduling, is the Test team is likely to go out first and have an early camp and some of the T20 players who are in the region will travel with that Test team and the T20 players who are involved in the IPL will join the team later.”

Page 1 of 2
© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.