An unbeaten century from middle-order batsman Kyle Mayers put the West Indies in pole position against Bangladesh on day two of the second Test at the Darren Sammy Stadium in St Lucia.

At the close of play, having overhauled Bangladesh the West Indies were 340 for 5 and had a lead of 106 runs.  The team’s strong position was in large part due to the work of Mayers who put together a dominant 126 from 180 deliveries,  providing the base of the West Indies' response to the Bangladesh first innings total of 234.

 The batsman came to the crease just before lunch with the team struggling at 132 for four and immediately went to work by putting on a big partnership with Jermaine Blackwood.

The duo steadied a shaky situation with a 116-run fifth-wicket stand after the team had fallen to 137 for 4.  Blackwood was dismissed just after tea, by spinner Mehidy Hasan, having added 40 to the tally.

Mayers, who scored 210 on debut against the same opponents last year, pressed on and helped himself to 15 fours and two sixes.  Wicketkeeper-batsman Joshua Da Silva joined him at the crease to add 26, and 92 for the sixth wicket, before the close of play.

Earlier, having resumed the day at 67 without loss, West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite and John Campbell pushed the score to 100 without loss.  The partnership was finally broken when pacer Shoriful Islam produced some extra bounce to Campbell who was then gobbled up by the wicketkeeper, on 45.

Brathwaite was next to follow and was bowled after being deceived by a flighted delivery from Mehidy, shortly after reaching a half-century.  The struggles of Raymond Reifer in the number three spot continued.  He never looked really comfortable before being dismissed by Khaled Ahmed after getting to 22.  Up next, Nkrumah Bonner, who also had success against Bangladesh last year, continued to struggle through a rough patch as he was dismissed for his second duck of the series.

 

 

Young Windies pacers Alzarri Joseph and Jayden Seales took three wickets apiece to reel in a comfortable-looking Bangladesh who seemed set for a big opening day in the second Test, at the Darren Sammy Ground in St Lucia.

Batting first Bangladesh found themselves in a strong position at 105 for 2 with a solid partnership between Anamul Haque and Najmul Hossain Shanto, who came together following the dismissal of Tamim Iqbal.  After looking set at the crease, Iqbal was dismissed by Joseph on 44.

 After briefly steading the innings the duo departed in quick succession, Haque was sent back for 23 by Phillip while Kyle Mayers dismissed Shanto Lbw for 26.  Shakib Al Hasan was then bowled by Jayden Seales for 8.

Bangladesh were 159-6 at tea with Liton Das set at the crease, but as soon as he reached 14th Test fifty, he was dismissed by Joseph on 53.

Tailenders Shoriful Islam and Ebadot Hossain pushed the team past 200 but the innings was wrapped up soon after.

At the close of play, West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite and opening partner John Campbell pushed the team to 67 without loss.  Campbell and Brathwaite were untroubled in making 32 and 30 respectively.  

 

West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite is adamant that the team has full confidence in batsman Raymond Reifer who recently took up responsibility at number 3 in the team’s batting line-up.

The move to insert the batsman so high in the team’s batting line-up has sparked discussion in some arenas and consternation in others, with many questioning the batsman’s suitability for the position.

The batsman is typically known for batting further down the line-up, but during the most recent West Indies Championship made cameos in the position on three occasions.  Batting at three, Reifer had notable scores of 79 and 71 and also scored 74 batting at number 4.  Overall, he scored 345 runs from 5 matches.

“Mentally he is a very strong character but batting at three for Barbados would certainly have propelled this decision and we back him 100 percent,” Brathwaite told members of the media on Thursday.

“We 100 percent believe that Raymond can do the job.  As an opener, the number 3 position is similar to an opener, it’s all about mental strength and we know Raymond has that and we are baking him to do well.  He did well for Barbados at three this year.  The year before he wasn’t at three, but mentally, and in terms of toughness, he is a guy that can get the job done and we back him 100 percent.”

Reifer has had a difficult start to the series against Bangladesh after being dismissed for 11 in the first innings and 2 in the second.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Game 1 - Position 3       23, 45

Game 2 – Position 4      74

Game 3 – Position 6 –   29, 27

Game 4 – Position 3 -    79

Game 5 – Position 3 -   71,  

Top­-class West Indies fast bowler, Kemar Roach, admits that the depth and quality of the new generation of fast bowlers is an encouraging sign for the regional team.

The 33-year-old Barbadian-born speedster continued to enhance his own legend this week when he moved up to join Michael Holding on the all-time Windies wicket-takers list.  With 249 Test wickets, Roach has established himself as the premier fast bowler of this Windies generation.

At 33, however, the player is heading towards the back end of his career, with the likes of Shannon Gabriel in the same position.  For pace bowling wickets though, it seems the Windies will continue to have plenty of options for years to come with the likes of Alzarri Joseph, Jayden Seales, and all-rounder Kyle Mayers all showing plenty of promise in recent times.

“You have Jayden and Alzarri 24, 25, and Kyle Mayers who is showing great skill with the ball and there are other guys on the outside trying to get in as well,” Roach told members of the media on Wednesday.

“It’s good that we have a crop of fast bowlers coming through that can get the job done and they are learning every day at practice, how to improve their skills, their body and technique and whatever, that’s all you ask from these guys.  It’s good that we have a pretty big quartet of fast bowlers now.”

Former West Indies cricketer Sylvester Joseph admits he was surprised by the decision to deploy Raymond Reifer at number 3 in the team’s batting line-up for the first Test against Bangladesh.

The 31-year-old batsman struggled to make an impact in the opener, dismissed for 11 in the first innings before being one of three batsmen dislodged in a brutal spell from Khaled Ahmed, this time without scoring.

Reifer cobbled together a strong season for the eventual champions Barbados Pride scoring 345 runs at an average of 49.28 in five matches.  Typically, however, the batsman was deployed to the middle order.

“Where he is batting is not where he batted throughout the season, which was at number 5, number six and you could understand that,” Joseph told the Mason and Guest radio show.

“To be honest when I just saw his name, I thought he might have been there to replace Kemar Roach who had some injury issues…it was really surprising to me that they had him as the number three batter,” he added.

“It was a bit of a shock…the selection of batting Reifer there was kind of baffling and it’s still baffling now because we are looking to see what the next move is, if they will carry on with him.”

Cricket West Indies (CWI) Men’s Selection Panel has named an unchanged squad for the second Padma Bridge – Dream Fulfilled - Friendship Test match against Bangladesh.

West Indies coach Phil Simmonds expects improved bowling performances from spinner Gudakesh Motie in the future after a fruitless debut with the ball against Bangladesh last week.

Overall, the spinner ended the opening Test with no wicket from 16 overs and conceded 43 runs.  The debut stood a far way from his performances in the West Indies Championship this season where he claimed 17 wickets in five matches, earning the attention of the West Indies selectors.

The 27-year-old did, however, make some sort of contribution with the bat after making 23 unbeaten from 21 deliveries, in the first innings.

“He scored a 100 in the Championship, so he can hold the bat and he can score like we saw but his bowling is going to improve,” Simmons said, following the first Test.

“I think when you play in your first Test match there’s always nerves, there’s a lot of things, but his bowling is going to improve,” he added.

While, for the most part, it was the pace bowlers who dominated affairs, Bangladesh spinner Mehidy Hasan claimed 4 for 59 in the first innings to put some pressure on the West Indies batting line-up.  West Indies and Bangladesh will face off in the second and final Test on Friday.

The Coolidge Cricket Ground (CCG), home of West Indies Cricket, is entering the final phase for major development planning which will transform the ICC accredited facility into a truly state of the art cricket and cultural heritage centre, Cricket West Indies announced on Friday.

Infrastructural work and rehabilitation are expected to commence later this year that will see CCG become a world class centre of cricket with linkages to several other smaller cricket academies across the region.

CCG will be able to adequately host training camps and player remedial work as well as stage international matches at all levels. This will include an Emerging Players Academy and the construction of an ultra-modern indoor/outdoor facility with several inputs for players’ preparation, including medical, training, fitness, and gym facilities.

“A strategic approach to master planning of the facility is well underway, and we are stepping into a new frontier as we seek to make CCG the 'flagship’ where players from the grassroots to the international level can develop and hone their technical and mental skills. We envision the CCG of the future as a truly world-class facility with all the amenities,” said Nelecia Yeates, General Manager of CCG.

“Fans attending matches at the ‘new CCG’ will also have an exceptional spectator experience. We will leave no stone unturned as we hold firm to the commitment and belief that all islands of the Caribbean can be the birthplace of greatness in our sport, both on the off the field,” Yeates added.

As part of the redevelopment project for the 20-acre facility, CCG has announced the appointment of a design collective consisting of CJC + Associates Inc., KSS Design Group Ltd and Melon Design Architecture to design and develop a transformational high-performance, world-class concept master plan.

“We were hugely impressed by the quality of all the responses for our Request for Proposals. But the level of information showcased in the design collective proposal was both impressive and inspiring. The winners have shown exceptional talent and promise, and aligned well with CWI’s vision to create a uniquely West Indian and world class cricket and heritage centre,” said Ricky Skerritt, President of CWI and Chairman of CCG.

“It is a huge achievement and opportunity, yet a humbling experience to be selected the winners, even more so with the high standard of entries as was expressed by the client,” said Colin John Jenkins on behalf of the design collective (CJC+ Associates Inc., KSS Design Group Ltd and Melon Design Architecture).

Within the next few months, Jenkins and the design collective team are expected to submit draft master plans to CCG and CWI for final design and costing approval.

 

West Indies Head Coach Phil Simmons has praised Captain Kraigg Brathwaite’s determination after the team’s seven-wicket victory over Bangladesh in the first Test at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium on Sunday.

In the first innings, Brathwaite made 94 off 268 balls, batting for 400 minutes in the process.

“There’s not much to tell as a batsman because I think everybody’s seen his determination and unique style,” Simmons said in an interview after the match.

“He doesn’t have a problem being there for five days and doing his job which is unique because a lot of batsmen nowadays want to play shots and be done with it but, from his point of view, he wants to be there all the time for his team and that rolls into the captaincy,” he added.

Since being named permanent Captain in March 2021, Brathwaite has led the team to a series win against England and drawn series against Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

“He seems to be growing into the role as we go along,” Simmons said.

“He’s not loud but the players know what he wants in his unique way. He makes them understand what he wants from them,” he added.

Brathwaite’s next assignment will be to lead the team to victory in the second test against Bangladesh which begins on Friday at the Daren Sammy Cricket Ground in St. Lucia.

 

Windies fast bowler Kemar Roach has admitted to feeling a tremendous sense of pride after joining legendary pace bowler Michael Holding on 249 Test wickets on the all-time West Indies Test wickets list.

On Saturday, the 33-year-old put in another stirring performance against one of his favourite opponents, Bangladesh.  The bowler’s 10th five-wicket haul, on this occasion figures of 5 for 54, not only left the West Indies on the verge of winning the first Test but represented a huge personal milestone.

His latest tally sees the bowler now tied for 6th all-time on the list of the regional team’s top wicket-takers, shoulder to shoulder with the revered Holding, and 10 behind Joel Garner for 5th.  The significance of the moment was not lost on the player, who made his Test debut against the same opponents in 2009.

 “I’m proud.  I’m proud to know how I started, obviously, I came into the team under very difficult conditions, and to build a career and get among the greats is a good feeling,” Roach said.

“I’m one for stats, I love my stats.  I'm always checking once I'm not playing, so it’s always good to be among the greats,” he added.

With more left in the tank, the bowler has targeted the 300 wickets milestone, which would put him 9 behind spinner Lance Gibbs and fifth on the all-time list.

“I’d love 300 Test wickets.  I’m at 249, I have about two to three more years left in me, so that’s the target.”

The West Indies are on the brink of victory after Saturday's day three of the first Test against Bangladesh thanks to an excellent spell of bowling from Kemar Roach at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium in Antigua.

Bangladesh carried on from their overnight 50-2 to reach 245 all out off 90.5 overs thanks to Captain Shakib Al Hasan who got his second fifty in the match with 63 and wicketkeeper Nurul Hasan who got 64. Opener Mahmudul Hasan Joy earlier got 42.

Roach, who now has 249 Test wickets, was brilliant for the hosts with 5-53 off 24.5 overs while Alzarri Joseph and Kyle Mayers supported well with 3-55 from 19 overs and 2-30 from 13 overs, respectively.

The hosts, needing 84 to win, got off to a terrible start and were 9-3 after four overs, losing captain Kraigg Brathwaite, Nkrumah Bonner, and Raymon Reifer in quick succession.

Opener John Campbell (28 not out) and vice-captain Jermaine Blackwood (17 not out) then combined to ensure the hosts lost no more wickets, ending the day 49-3 off 15 overs, needing a further 35 runs for a 1-0 lead in the two-match series.

Khaled Ahmed took all three wickets for Bangladesh.

West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite has expressed disappointment on missing out on triple figures against Bangladesh but was satisfied in playing a crucial innings on day 2 of the second Test.

The opening batsman crafted a resilient 94 from 268 balls, a resilient 400 minutes that went a long way towards anchoring the team’s total of 265 and a first-innings lead.

Just short of a deserved 11th Test century, the batsman was, however, deceived by Khaled Ahmed and sent back to the pavilion just four short of the coveted total.

“Obviously, I was a little disappointed but I’m happy that the team has formed a lead and it will be key for us to start well tomorrow,” Brathwaite told members of the media on Friday.

“The most important thing was to build a foundation for me, and my team and I was happy with the time I spent.  So well done to the team for getting a lead,” he added.

The West Indies will enter the third day with a lead of 112 runs, after ending the day on 52 for 2.

 

West Indies Women stars Deandra Dottin, Hayley Matthews, and Stafanie Taylor will lead the inaugural three teams of the Women’s Caribbean Premier League, which is expected to bowl off in August.

The three-team tournament will take place in  St Kitts and Nevis and feature the Barbados Royals, Guyana Amazon Warriors, and Trinbago Knight Riders franchises.  Matthews will be captain of the Royals, Taylor the Guyana Amazon Warriors, and Dottin the Trinbago Knight Riders.

The players taking part in the competition were drafted from a pool put together by Cricket West Indies (CWI’s) selection committee out of which 33 were picked.  Each team will have the option of signing three overseas players which will bring the total squad size to 14.

 

The first Test between the West Indies and Bangladesh is evenly poised after Friday’s day two at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium in Antigua.

The hosts carried on from their overnight 95-2 to be bowled out for 265 after 112.5 overs.

Captain Kraigg Brathwaite carried on from his 42 on day one to eventually be dismissed for a marathon 94 off 268 balls including nine fours.

Vice-captain Jermaine Blackwood also showed good form with a 139-ball 63, also including nine boundaries.

Off-spinner Mehidy Hasan Miraz led the way with the ball, with 4-59 off 22.5 overs, while pacers Ebadot Hossain and Khaled Ahmed ended with figures of 2-65 off 28 overs and 2-59 off 22 overs, respectively.

Bangladesh then struggled to 50-2 off 20 overs, trailing the Windies by 112 runs at the close, with Mahmudul Hasan Joy (18) and Najmul Hossain Shanto (8) at the crease. Alzarri Joseph took both wickets for the West Indies.

 

 Former Jamaica captain Nehemiah Perry believes the development of talented fast bowler O’Shane Thompson would have been aided greatly by featuring in more red-ball matches.

The fast bowler got the attention of the region and world in 2017 when he bowled with express pace at the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).  Despite some promising cameos, however, Thomas has not lived up to that promise and is currently out of the Windies squad.

The player’s conditioning has also been a source of concern with the bowler looking several pounds overweight and not approaching speeds seen earlier on.  Perry believes, however, that a part of the problem was the player’s introduction in the shortest format.

“When I saw O’Shane and he was bowling real quick, yes there were some inconsistencies in his delivery but when he gets right he can be very lethal,” Perry told the Mason and Guest radio show.

“I said to my colleagues in the Caribbean and Jamaica, we need to play O’Shane Thomas in four-day cricket. He needs to play the long version of the game, he needs to learn how to bowl.  Learn the art of bowling.

“If you blood someone in T20 cricket where all they have to do is bowl short, not sure were you going to land the delivery.  If you play four-day cricket and you are bowling 20 overs a day you are going to learn the art of bowling and bowling more consistently,” he added.

‘Your body will be stronger and you will have a better work ethic.”

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