West Indies squad for the first two T20Is against India have been announced on Tuesday (July 23). Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard have been included in the 14-member squad. Andre Russell, who had been suffering from injury and had a surgery as well, has been named in the squad but he will have to undergo a fitness test before the two games in Florida. However, their key player Chris Gayle will not be featured in the series as he will be seen in Canada’s Global T20 League.
Sunil Narine last played for West Indies in a T20I match in the way back 2016 against England and since then he has played only one ODI in West Indies colours later that year.
On the other hand, Anthony Bramble, the wicketkeeper-batsman, has earned his maiden call-up including Khary Pierre and John Campbell. Bramble has played 12 T20 matches and has 70 runs.
He has played 46 List A matches so far where he even led the side and scored 640 runs which came at an average of 21.33. He has led West Indies B team to the final of the Global T20 Tournament last year. Even he was picked by Guyana Amazon Warriors in the CPL recently.
“We have been following his performances in regional competitions over the years and it cannot be forgotten that he led the West Indies ‘B’ Team to the GT20 in Canada, and that team did well to reach the Final,” said Robert Haynes, the interim chairman of the Selection Panel.
“We figured that though Nicholas Pooran will be the first-choice wicketkeeper, we needed to have someone to deputise in case something unexpected happens and he is a perfect choice. He is 27 and has a lot of ambition, and we saw his character come out the way he batted whenever Guyana Jaguars were in problems in the West Indies Championship and Super50 Cup, so we know he is capable of getting the job done,” he shared.
“This squad is an excellent balance of experience and youth,” said Haynes.
“It’s not just about the present but we are also looking at the T20 World Cup coming up next year and it is important that we find the right combination of players and the right formula for defending our title. We have to make sure that we put certain things in place now so that when it comes to picking the squad for the T20 World Cup, it becomes easier, so we are giving more players the opportunity to play and get the exposure,” he further added.
“We felt that players like Narine and Pollard, who have played well in T20 leagues around the World, once they are fit and mentally ready to play, we must give them the opportunity to represent the West Indies again,” he told.
John Campbell, Evin Lewis, Shimron Hetmyer, Nicolas Pooran, Kieron Pollard, Rovman Powell, Carlos Brathwaite (C), Keemo Paul, Sunil Narine, Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas, Anthony Bramble, Andre Russell, Khary Pierre