Cricket West Indies has announced the Windies squad for the upcoming ODI series against the visiting Bangladesh side and the presence of all-rounder Andre Russell has come across as a pleasant surprise.
Russell has only featured in one ODI for the West Indies since the end of 2015 World Cup. He was suspended for a year from January 2017 to 2018 for violating the World Anti-Doping Agency's guidelines, charged with a failure to file his whereabouts three times a year, which amounts to a failed dope test.
Head coach Stuart Law welcomed Russell back into the side and said, “This is the start of our prep for 2019 CWC. Opportunities for players to stake a claim to be included in the squad. Great to have Dre Russ back as well. His explosive power and energy will breathe life into an already motivated squad,”
The squad gives a clear sign that the selectors are prioritising the 50-overs World Cup next year in England, as youngsters like Kieran Powell and Alzarri Joseph have been named in the 13-man squad ahead of Carlos Brathwaite, Marlon Samuels, Nikita Miller, Sheldon Cottrell and Kesrick Williams, who played the ICC World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe earlier this year.
Fast bowler Kemar Roach has been rested from the ODI series, as the team management continues to monitor the hamstring niggle that made him miss the second Test in Jamaica.
Chairman of Selectors, Courtney Browne said, “As we continue to prepare, there are only 16 ODIs leading up to the tournament. The panel will focus on giving opportunities from time to time to players that we believe can add value to the ODI team. Kemar Roach will be rested for the upcoming series as we continue to manage players’ workload."
“With the Super50 Championship set for October this year, we will also have an opportunity for regional players to perform heavily and place themselves in line to be considered for selection. The panel wishes Jason and his team every success in the upcoming series against Bangladesh,”
Jason Holder (c), Devendra Bishoo, Chris Gayle, Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope (wk), Alzarri Joseph, Evin Lewis, Jason Mohammed, Ashley Nurse, Keemo Paul, Kieran Powell, Rovman Powell, Andre Russell
(Inputs from WICB)