Pooran among 8 Windies T20I players to face New Zealand 'A' in 1st class matches

Pooran among 8 Windies T20I players to face New Zealand 'A' in 1st class matches

Saturday, November 28, 2020

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ST JOHN'S, Antigua (CMC) — Eight members of the West Indies Twenty20 International squad — headed by vice-captain Nicholas Pooran — will join six Test reserves to form a West Indies “A” squad to face New Zealand “A” in a two-match series next month.

Pooran, Fabian Allen, Brandon King, Kyle Mayers, Rovman Powell, Romario Shepherd, Oshane Thomas and Hayden Walsh Jr will feature in the two four-day, first-class matches from December 3 to 6 at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui and from December 11 to 14 at Saxton Oval in Nelson.

“This series will give our players an opportunity to play first-class cricket against foreign opposition, as well as experience different conditions in New Zealand,” Windies chief selector, Roger Harper said.

“It will also help to keep them in the frame should the need for replacements for the Test team arise, as we will have players who have been playing red-ball cricket and in form to consider.”

No captain was named, but CMC understands that the West Indies selectors will rotate the position for the two matches to have insight into the leadership qualities of the players under consideration — most likely Pooran and Rovman Powell, a stand-in West Indies ODI captain last year.

The selectors will keep a keen eye on the performance of Pooran because the left-hander has not played a first-class match since December 2014 and his exploits in white-ball formats for the Windies have prompted calls for his selection to the Test side.

Pooran has played only three first-class matches in his career — for Trinidad & Tobago Red Force — and the West Indies selectors have been hesitant to heed calls for his Test selection because they have generally indicated that they are not aware of his current form or capability in the longer formats, for the simple reason that he has not played much red-ball matches in recent times.

Pooran's hiatus from first-class matches has been caused by a vehicular crash in January 2015 in which he suffered a career-threatening leg injury and his globetrotting to domestic Twenty20 leagues on his return to the game from that setback about three years ago.

Except for the former West Indies Under-19 pacer, Jayden Seales, all of the other players have played first-class matches to varying degrees and success in the last three seasons.

Seales, 19, is yet to make his first-class debut, but he played a handful of T20 matches for champions Trinbago Knight Riders in the Caribbean Premier League this year in his native Trinidad.

He has been a part of the Windies Test reserves on the current Tour of New Zealand. It's a decision taken by the selectors, which they have described as “developmental” for the young pacer.

Squad:

Fabian Allen, Nkrumah Bonner, Joshua DaSilva, Brandon King, Kyle Mayers, Preston McSween, Shayne Moseley, Nicholas Pooran, Rovman Powell, Raymon Reifer, Jayden Seales, Romario Shepherd, Oshane Thomas, Hayden Walsh Jr.


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