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West Indies recall Roach for India ODI series; King and Bonner selected but Evin misses out

Thirty-three-year-old pacer Kemar Roach was recalled to the West Indies team today, one of five changes to the One-day International (ODI) side to face India at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad next month.

West Indies T20 International opening batsman Brandon King, 27, was also selected along with 33-year-old Nkrumah Bonner, now a regular in the Test arena. Bonner made his ODI debut in Bangladesh a year ago and has so far played three matches, while King has played four matches in this format.

Photo: West Indies bowler Kemar Roach (right) celebrates with his teammates while India batsman Rohit Sharma looks on.

Rested for the Pakistan tour, pacer Jason Holder also returns and Fabian Allen is back from injury.

on 6, 9 and 11 February, West Indies and India play three ODIs, which form part of the ICC ODI Super League with points going towards qualification for the India 2023 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup.

The two nations will also play three T20Is at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on 16, 18, and 20 February. The Cricket West Indies (CWI) selectors are expected to announce their T20I squad to travel to India on Friday.

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Lead selector Sir Desmond Haynes suggested that Roach’s selection owes much to his wicket-taking ability. Roach has 124 ODI wickets from 90 matches, with an average of 30.34 and an economy rate of 5.06.

“Kemar Roach is one of our leading fast bowlers and we believe we need bowlers upfront to get early wickets,” newly appointed lead selector Haynes told the CWI Media, “and Kemar, with an economy rate of five, is certainly good enough to play. 

Photo: West Indies batsman Nkrumah Bonner (right) drives square during the second day of the First Test between Bangladesh and West Indies at the Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong.
(Copyright AFP)

“Over the last few years, Nkrumah Bonner’s cricket has come on leaps and bounds and we believe he should be given an opportunity to play in the 50-over format.”

Kieron Pollard captains the team, which also includes Shamarh Brooks, Darren Bravo, Odean Smith and Hayden Walsh Jr.

Neither star opener Evin Lewis nor middle-order batsman Roston Chase was named, while Justin Greaves, Gudakesh Motie, Anderson Phillip, Raymon Reifer and Devon Thomas also failed to retain the places earned for the December 2021 tour to Pakistan. An outbreak of Covid-19 within the West Indies camp meant they returned to the Caribbean without ever taking the field.

Lewis skipped the Pakistan tour and instead played franchise cricket in Abu Dhabi. Subsequently, in late December 2021, he tested positive for Covid-19 and, according to CWI Media, was ruled out of the white ball series against Ireland and England as a result.

Photo: West Indies opener Evin Lewis hits a leg-side boundary during the third T20I against Pakistan at the Queen’s Park Oval in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, on 1 April 2017.
(Copyright AFP Photo / Jewel Samad)

However, he was not selected to go to India with the ODI side either.

Haynes said the selectors are trying to create more depth in their player pool.

“We want to have competition for places,” said Haynes. “We want to reach a stage where we have a lot of players fighting for positions. We want to broaden the pool of players we have to choose from. 

“The team we have selected is a very good side and we are looking at this tour as part of the preparations for the World Cup in India in 2023.”

West Indies ODI Team:

Kieron Pollard (captain), Fabian Allen, Nkrumah Bonner, Darren Bravo, Shamarh Brooks, Jason Holder, Shai Hope, Akeal Hosein, Alzarri Joseph, Brandon King, Nicholas Pooran, Kemar Roach, Romario Shepherd, Odean Smith, Hayden Walsh Jr.

West Indies Tour to India

6 February: 1st ODI at Ahmedabad

9 February: 2nd ODI at Ahmedabad

11 February: 3rd ODI at Ahmedabad

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