On Tuesday, the Cricket West Indies (CWI) announced the 13-member squad for the upcoming first Test of the two-match leg against South Africa. The Daren Sammy National Cricket Stadium in St Lucia will host the series opener on Monday (June 10).
Shai Hope has made his return to the Test squad after being dropped last year after a disastrous tour of England, where he managed a total of 105 runs in six innings. Hope’s comeback in the whites is due to his successful stint in the ODI series against Sri Lanka held in March this year. In that series, the right-handed batter top-scored with 258 runs from three fixtures.
Apart from Hope, Kieron Powell has also returned in the Test outfit. Powell’s last red-ball appearance came way back in 2018 during the tour to Bangladesh.
“Shai Hope has performed very well in the red ball matches he has played, following on the back of his highly successful One-Day International series against Sri Lanka, so he has forced his way into the squad by performance,” said Lead Selector Roger Harper as quoted by Cricbuzz.
“Kieran Powell, we know, is a very capable batsman who we expect to add quality and depth to the batting department. He put himself in the mix with his performance in the Best v Best match,” he added.
The Test squad also includes a newcomer in the form of 19-year-old speedster Jayden Seales. The Trinidad and Tobago bowler grabbed the limelight during the 2020 U-19 World Cup, where he bagged 10 wickets from six matches.
“Jayden Seales is young, very enthusiastic and has a big heart. In the ‘Best v Best’ matches, he bowled with pace, got movement and displayed the ability to take wickets. We think he is capable of adding potency to the bowling attack,” Harper added further.
Here is West Indies squad for the first Test against South Africa:
Kraigg Brathwaite (c), Jermaine Blackwood (vc), Jason Holder, Shai Hope, Alzarri Joseph, Kyle Mayers, Kieran Powell, Kemar Roach, Jayden Seales, Nkrumah Bonner, Roston Chase, Rahkeem Cornwall, Joshua Da Silva.