'Give Evin a go' - former WI wicketkeeper Hendricks would love to see hard-hitting left-hander audition for Test opener spot

By Sports Desk June 05, 2021

Former West Indies wicketkeeper, Jackie Hendricks, believes Cricket West Indies (CWI) selectors should consider looking at hard-hitting left hander Evin Lewis as a Test team opener.

The 29-year-old Trinidadian-born batsman, who idolizes another big hitting left hander, Chris Gayle, has had some success in the shorter formats of the game, but, unlike Gayle, is yet to play a Test match for the West Indies.

Lewis has scored 1791 runs in 54 One Day International (ODI) matches, at an average of 37.31, with a high score of 176.  In 35 T20 Internationals, the batsman has managed 989 runs with a strike rate of 155.74 and an impressive high score of 125.

The batsman, who also has 1229 runs in 22 First Class cricket matches, and a century scored while representing the Trinidad and Tobago Red Force in the regional four-day competition, has not played the format since 2017.

“I’ve always thought the selectors were a little short-sighted for not given him a go in the Test matches,” Hendricks told the Mason and Guest Radio program.

“I’ve been impressed with how he plays in the 50 overs.  He is not a real hitter, he plays his shots very well, he always gets into position and so on.  So, I’m disappointed that he is not thought about for the team,” he added.

Recently, there have been calls for the selectors to consider widening the pool of available Test players but considering some of the players that do very well in the shorter formats.

Related items

  • Stokes return a 'great boost' for England - Leach Stokes return a 'great boost' for England - Leach

    England's Jack Leach has said Ben Stokes' return to the squad is a "great boost" ahead of the start of the Ashes series in Australia.

    Stokes has not played competitively since July and was initially omitted from England's squad as he recovered from a second operation on a broken finger and took a break to protect his mental wellbeing, but the all-rounder was subsequently added to the travelling party.

    Stokes famously partnered Leach in a last-wicket stand of 76 to dramatically beat the Aussies in the third Test at Headingley in 2019.

    "Obviously having Stokesy back is a great boost for all of us," Leach said. "Some of the things he's done in the past, you know, he's such an important player for us.

    "In terms of the balance, it really helps things out, and it's probably good news for the spin department.

    "The wickets aren't necessarily going to be really spin-friendly, but I think spin has as a big part to play in Ashes series where England have been successful.

    "The spinners have got a big part to play. So, yeah, I'm hopeful I can be the guy and play that role, definitely."

    On how Stokes has reintegrated into training and the squad, Leach added: "Luckily, I haven't had to face him in the nets. But yeah, he's looking really good.

    "He's fit back into the group brilliantly. It's great to have him back around.

    "He's been brilliant and he's such a team man. I think the group is only better for having him in it. He brings experience, I think he really brings the boys together, so that's been really good.

    "He's looking good bowling and batting. I've bowled at him and he doesn't block too many balls from the spinners, so yeah, he's looked good."

    Leach is hopeful of playing a part in the upcoming series, and admitted to regularly watching his Australian counterpart Nathan Lyon to pick up tips and tricks to improve his own bowling.

    "I'm preparing to play, definitely. Like I do for every series that I'm involved with," he added. "For me, the best way to go about it, obviously is to try to prepare to play, and then obviously be really disappointed if I'm not.

    "For years I've watched Nathan Lyon, and he's very impressive how he goes about his business. Just how strong his stock ball is and on wickets that don't necessarily offer a lot spin-wise, I think he's found ways to extract bounce and dip. So a lot over spin from him, and I think those are the kind of things I've been trying to add in.

    "You take little bits from everyone you play against. I was in India looking at Axar Patel, [Ravi] Ashwin and seeing what I can take from them. So you're always doing that.

    "But I think it's important not to get too caught up in that and also just stick to your strengths as well, and know that you're playing at this level for a reason."

  • 'WI must keep pressure on ' - Mayers insists team must focus on restricting Sri Lanka batsmen to have chance 'WI must keep pressure on ' - Mayers insists team must focus on restricting Sri Lanka batsmen to have chance

    West Indies middle-order batsman, Kyle Mayers, insists the team must keep the pressure on Sri Lanka if they aim to stay in with a chance of levelling the series heading into the fourth day.

    Mayers dug in to put on a useful 36 from 64 balls as the Windies secured a narrow lead over the hosts at the end of their first innings, on the third day.

    Resuming the day at 69 for 1, the Windies had a strong morning session, but the Sri Lanka spinners struck back to claim the team’s last seven wickets for just 87 runs. 

    The Windies began the second innings with a narrow lead of 49 but kept the pressure on by striking twice with two exceptional runouts to leave the hosts at 46 for 2, at the end of the day’s play.  Mayers, who did his part by dismissing the dangerous Dimuth Karunaratne, insists the team must keep that attitude heading into tomorrow.

    “We need to keep down the run rate and keep up the pressure,” Mayers said, following the end of play.

    “We are ahead in the game now, so if we can stop them from scoring, runs are crucial heading into the last day.  The least amount of runs they get is the better it is for us,” he added.

    “So, if we can keep the pressure on and squeeze some wicket out early tomorrow, first hour, I think we will be good.”

  • West Indies hold slim lead over Sri Lanka heading into fourth day of second Test in Galle West Indies hold slim lead over Sri Lanka heading into fourth day of second Test in Galle

    Sri Lanka are 46-2 at the end of the third day of the second Test against the West Indies at Galle on Wednesday, still three runs behind the visitors in a match that is delicately poised heading into Thursday’s fourth day.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.