WI vs NZ, ODI Series: Game 1 of 3: Windies to lock horns with New Zealand in ODI Series today
…Paul, Hetmyer, Motie ruled out of squad
West Indies will duke it out with New Zealand today at the Kensington Oval in Barbados as the first of three One Day International matches is played.
Slated to commence at 14:00 hrs, the day/night match is expected to “bring the heat” as the men in maroon look to recover after losing the T20I series 2-1.
Keemo Paul, Shimron Hetmyer and Gudakesh Motie have been ruled out of the Windies ODI squad, while Jermaine Blackwood and Yannic Cariah have been added as their replacement.
With the T20I series done and dusted, West Indies white ball captain Nicholas Pooran has noted that the main goal is for the West Indies to improve as a team in the 50 overs’ format.
“Out of the last three games, we played two wonderful games. Unfortunately, we have not crossed the line, but we have learned a lot from these games that we have played, and I think the guys are ready for this challenge from New Zealand. We know it’s for points, and we are all up for the challenge,” he shared.
Pooran explained that in terms of his prospects, it has been a tough summer, as the Windies lost their ODI series against both Bangladesh and India. But, as the games are being played in the Caribbean, he feels the team is in a good position, and while there are certain factors that have to be set in place to win their games, they are still learning.
Acknowledging that the team is relatively young, he has still commended certain players, such as Alzarri Joseph, who has been leading the bowling attack. He has also acknowledged that certain players are starting to get scores behind their names, players such as: Shai Hope, Kyle Mayers, Shamarh Brooks and he himself.
The white ball captain has touted that, heading into Barbados, he is expecting good pitches, and hopefully, the team can cross the line with a win over New Zealand.
“I feel we are building in the right direction, to be honest, but only time will tell. I don’t want to say that now, but I feel we are building really nicely, and we will get to where we want in time. But we have to keep putting in the hard work from now,” Pooran has posited.
Regarding the pressure situation with the West Indies needing to win their last three games to secure an automatic qualification to the 50 Overs World Cup, Pooran divulged that the pressure is on in the camp, as they try to win cricket games. He noted that the team has been together for the last three to four months, and while they are aware of the situation, they are looking at it from a different situation. He relayed that the team knows what is at stake, and what must be done to be successful in the series.
It has also been reported that Shimron Hetmyer is unavailable, due to personal reasons; allrounder Keemo Paul is ruled out with an injury, and left-arm spinner Gudakesh Motie has failed to recover from the hand injury sustained during the CG United Series against India last month.
The replacements are middle-order batter Jermaine Blackwood and leg-spinning allrounder Yannic Cariah. Blackwood has been called up for the ODI squad for the first time since 2015, and Cariah has earned his first squad call-up for the West Indies after being promoted from the West Indies A squad that has been playing against Bangladesh.
Cariah captained the West Indies Emerging Players team that won the CG United Super50 Cup (then the Colonial Insurance Super50 Cup) in 2019. Odean Smith, the seam-bowling allrounder, has been added as a reserve.
Nicholas Pooran (Captain, Shai Hope (Vice Captain), Jermaine Blackwood, Shamarh Brooks, Yannic Cariah, Keacy Carty, Jason Holder, Akeal Hosein, Alzarri Joseph, Brandon King, Kyle Mayers, Jayden Seales, Kevin Sinclair. Travelling Reserve – Odean Smith