Guyana’s Wicket-Keeper/ Batsman Anthony Bramble along with the Trinidadian pair Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard have been selected by the West Indies for the first two MyTeam11 Twenty20 International Series, co-sponsored by Skoda against India which will be played at Broward County Stadium in Lauderhill, Florida, USA on August 3&4.The 28-year-old Bramble, who hails from Corriverton, Berbice but plays for Albion, is the only newcomer in the 14-member squad.
Bramble was recently picked for Guyana Amazon Warriors in the CPL for the first time in three years after he captained a West Indies ‘B’ team to the GT20 in Canada and has played 12 T20 matches.
The Selection Panel has the opportunity to make changes to the squad before the third T20I on August 6 at the Providence Stadium in Guyana.
Bramble, who has 10 fifties and three centuries in 58 First-Class matches with 225 dismissals, has also 46 List A games but will not be the first choice Keeper since Trinidadian Nicolas Pooran has been picked as the number Keeper.
Bramble has given firm proof of his batting and keeping ability in the West Indies Championship for reigning five-time champions Guyana Jaguars, who also reached the Final of last year’s West Indies Super50 Cup.
“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 Interim Chairman of Selectors Robert Haynes.
“We figured that though Nicholas Pooran will be the first-choice wicketkeeper, but we needed to have someone to deputize in case something unexpected happens and Bramble is the perfect choice.
“He is young and has a lot of ambition, and we saw his character come out in 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.”
In addition to Pollard and Narine, the squad also includes Andre Russell, subject to him passing a fitness assessment prior to the series. He is set to return to the playing field following his early exit from the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 England & Wales to undergo an operation on his troublesome left knee.
Off-Spinner Narine last played in a T20I for West Indies against England almost two years ago at Chester-le-Street and batting all-rounder Pollard appeared last November on the Tour of India.
Veteran opener Chris Gayle, who wants his last International game to be in the second and final Test in his home Island Jamaica, stated that he was unavailable for the series, due to playing commitments at the GT20 in Canada, and left-handed Jamaican John Campbell will fill the slot.
Left-handed opener Campbell and left-arm spinner Khary Pierre have also been included alongside a number of regulars led by Carlos Brathwaite, as the interim CWI Selection Panel seeks to explore options with the ICC World T20 looming next year in Australia.
“This squad is an excellent balance of experience and youth,” said Haynes.
“It’s not just about the present – the India Tour of the West Indies – 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.”
“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,” said Haynes.
As one of the most feared and fierce hitters in the shortest version of the game, Russell will add further depth to the batting, and Haynes expects him and the other senior members of the squad to play a big role in the series.
“We expect that this will be a keenly contested series against India,” said Haynes. “Most of the players that we have selected have played in the IPL and they know all of the Indian players well.
“We will have the edge for sure because we are playing at home. At the end of the day however, it is important that the players go out there and play to win, not just to compete, and I think we have the right balance to do so,” Haynes said.
Squad for 1st two T20s: Carlos Brathwaite (Captain), Anthony Bramble, John Campbell, Sheldon Cottrell, Shimron Hetmyer, Evin Lewis, Sunil Narine, Keemo Paul, Khary Pierre, Kieron Pollard, Nicholas Pooran, Rovman Powell, Andre Russell, Oshane Thomas
India to West Indies 2019 fixtures:
Sat, Aug 3: 1st MyTeam11 Twenty20 International – Broward County Stadium, Lauderhill, Florida (10:30 am start)
Sun, Aug 4: 2nd MyTeam11 Twenty20 International – Broward County Stadium (10:30 am)
Tue, Aug 6: 3rd MyTeam11 International –Providence (10:30 am)
Thu, Aug 8: 1st MyTeam11 One-day International – Providence (9:30 am)
Sun, Aug 11: 2nd MyTeam11 One-day International – Queen’s Park Oval, Trinidad (9:30 am)
Wed, Aug 14: 3rd MyTeam11 One-day International – Queen’s Park Oval (9:30 am)
Sat, Aug 17 to Mon, Aug 19: Tour Match – Coolidge Cricket Ground, Antigua (9:30 am daily)
Thu, Aug 22 to Mon, Aug 26: 1st MyTeam11 Test – Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, Antigua (9:30 am daily)
Fri, Aug 30 to Tue, Sep 3: 2nd MyTeam11 Test – Sabina Park, Jamaica (9:30 am da
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