JOHN’S, Antigua– The Selection Panel of Cricket West Indies today named a 15-member Windies Test squad for the Tour of England, starting later this month.
Opening batsman Kyle Hope and left-handed all-rounder Raymon Reifer are the only two uncapped players in the squad for the tour which will feature the first ever day/night Test in England from August 18 to 22 at Edgbaston. The second match will be at Headingley (August 25 to 29) with the third at Lord’s (September 7 to 11).
Following the Test matches, the Windies will have the limited overs segment of the tour. The squads for the five One-Day Internationals and one-off T20 International will be named at a later date.
Jason Holder (Captain)
Kraigg Braithwaite (Vice Captain)
On the announcement of the squad, Courtney Browne, Chairman of Selection Panel of CWI, said: “The core group of this squad has been playing together from the Test series against India last year in the Caribbean. The group is developing nicely and we are already seeing some good signs from some individual players and the team as a whole. Our bowling again has shown that hard work and consistency will bring success. This bowling group has played around 10 Test matches consecutively and quite a number of ODIs together over the last year, and they had success which augurs well for their continued development.
On the selection of Kyle Hope and Raymon Reifer, Browne said: “We have two players who will be new to Tests, but they have experience at first-class level having played in the expanded Digicel Regional 4-Day Tournament. Kyle will be our third option as opener and he can also be a possible No.3. Raymon adds variety to our attack with his left-arm swing bowling and has proven to be very useful with the bat in the lower order. He, therefore, adds value to our team and could be very useful in English conditions. The reformatted Digicel R4Day has borne fruit over the last few years and the CWI is pushing ahead to continuously improve the competition.
On the return of Kemar Roach, Browne said: “Kemar’s return is welcomed as he was one of the best fast bowlers in Tests in the recent past for us. We have seen him during the last Digicel R4Day season show signs of his return to form. He may not be bowling as quickly as before, but still possesses that skill we all knew he had, plus his experience adds greater depth to the attack.
On his general expectations, Browne said: “We have three matches against County teams before the first Test. These warm-up matches will not only allow the team to acclimatise, but also give players a chance to challenge for the few spots that have opened up in the final 11. All of our players are accustomed to the pink ball. They have been exposed to it during the Digicel R4Day. Our team also played a pink-ball Test match against Pakistan last year in Dubai, so this will not be a new experience for them. Overall, it will be a tough series, but we all have seen this young team fight before and I am sure they will continue to show similar qualities on this upcoming trip.”
NOTE: Darren Bravo was not considered for selection, as the squad was chosen before he issued his apology.
Tuesday, August 1 to Thursday, August 3
Tour Match vs Essex – County Ground, Chelmsford
Sunday, August 6 to Tuesday, Aug 8
Tour Match vs Kent – St Lawrence Ground, Canterbury
Friday, August 11 to Sunday, August 13
Tour Match vs Derbyshire – County Ground, Derby
Thursday, August 17 to Monday, August 21
1st Test – Edgbaston, Birmingham (day/night)
Friday, August 25 to Tuesday, August 29
2nd Test – Headingley, Leeds
Saturday, September 2 to Sunday, September 3
Tour Match vs Leicestershire – Grace Road, Leicester
Thursday, September 7 to Monday, September 11
3rd Test – Lord’s, London