The three players who pulled out of the upcoming West Indies tour of England expressed serious misgivings about the risk posed to their health, despite the assurances provided.

The trio, Darren Bravo, Keemo Paul, and Shimron Hetmyer all respectfully declined to be part of a 25-man squad picked to tour England next month.  With eyes firmly on the coronavirus epidemic, the three-Test series will be played in empty stadiums and players placed in a quarantined bio-secure environment as soon as they arrive in the UK.  In addition, the players will be brought in on a private flight.

The precautions were, however, not enough to assuage the fears of the players. With 283,311 cases and 40,261 deaths, the UK recently took over from Italy as the European country most badly affected by the coronavirus.  In declining Bravo, Paul and Hetmyer wrote to the CWI authorities and cited concerns for themselves and their families.

“Keemo Paul is the sole breadwinner in his entire household and wider family. He was really concerned if something happened to him how his family would cope,” CWI CEO Grave told ESPNCricinfo.

“He wrote passionately about how hard a decision it was for him and how much he loves playing for West Indies, but after with consultation with his family he doesn’t feel he can leave them and doesn’t want to go on the tour,” he added.

Grave went on to reveal that in a similar email from Hetmyer, he explained that he “didn’t feel comfortable from a safety point of view, leaving his home, leaving his family and heading over to England.”

The CEO had earlier insisted the decision will not be held against any of the players.

When the SportsMax Zone and a panel of experts consider the monumental task of picking its four bowlers for SportsMax’s Ultimate XI One-Day International (ODI) team, there will be an omission of monstrous proportions.

The panel will not be considering the impressive ODI career of one of Australia’s greatest pace bowlers, Glenn McGrath.

Yesterday, the panel was asked to shortlist a shortlist of pace bowlers so they could discuss what the final list of bowlers looks like this evening. The results were shocking.

From a list of 12 fast bowlers, only six have remained for consideration by the panel.

The evening began with Dennis Lillee, Allan Donald, Shane Bond, Shaun Pollock, Curtly Ambrose, Brett Lee, McGrath, Richard Hadlee, Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Chaminda Vaas, Joel Garner, and Michael Holding.

The panel will consider no more, the cases of Lee, Bond, Pollock, Ambrose, McGrath, and Donald.

There wasn’t complete unison in the decision, however, as statistician and sports writer Zaheer Clarke believes McGrath’s figures over the years, in particular, his World Cup figures makes it absurd that he is not to be considered for the final three placings in SportsMax’s Ultimate XI ODI team.

Later this evening on the SportsMax Zone at 4:30 pm Eastern Standard Time and 5:30 pm in the Eastern Caribbean, the panel will discuss which three of Australia’s Lillee, Pakistan’s Akram and Younis, the West Indies’ Garner and Holding, and New Zealand’s Hadlee will take the three fast-bowling spots up for grabs.

At this point, like Clarke, Fanalysts believe the panel to be spewing hogwash with at least two of their decisions.

For the Fanalysts, Wasim Akram, Curtly Ambrose, and Glenn McGrath are the three best ODI pace bowlers the world has ever seen.

Remember, you can vote on what you want your Ultimate XI to look like by going to SportsMax.tv and clicking on the banner or clicking on the link here.

The Fanalyst vote counts for 40% of overall votes, while the panel of experts and the SportsMax Zone have 30% each.

To date, the Zone and panel have picked the same ODI Ultimate XI line-up, with that list looking like Rohit Sharma and Sachin Tendulkar as the openers, AB de Villiers, Viv Richards and Virat Kohli as the middle order batsmen 3-5, Mahendra Singh Dhoni as the wicketkeeper, and Imran Khan as the all-rounder.

The Fanalysts have differed regarding the middle-order and the all-rounder, going for Brian Lara to join de Villiers and Kohli, and Jacques Kallis to do all things cricket.

Recently recalled West Indies spinner Rahkeem Cornwall insists he is satisfied with precautions taken for the team's upcoming tour of England, in light of concerns related to the Coronavirus pandemic.

The West Indies will travel to England for a three-test series next month, which marks a long-awaited return to international cricket for both teams. 

Due to the ongoing threat of the coronavirus pandemic, however, the matches will be played without fans and the players operate strictly within a bio secure environment.  The UK was the hardest-hit country by the coronavirus, recently surpassing Italy with the highest death toll in Europe.  Three players, batsmen Shimron Hetmyer and Darren Bravo and all-rounder Keemo Paul opted out of the 25-man touring party because of coronavirus fears.

“Basically we are going to be quarantined and stay in an environment where you can’t leave.  So, it’s basically you and your teammates that would have to communicate for the duration of the tour.  So, I am satisfied that the precautions are in place,” Cornwall told the Antigua Observer.

“It’s a good feeling to be selected for the series.  We just have to try and be protective in terms of what’s going on, but cricketing-wise, it’s a good feeling knowing that you are going to get some cricket under your belt.  You just have to go and do what you have to do.  It’s not spinner friendly but you never know what conditions will be like.”

Cornwall could, however, have added concerns.  According to the Intensive Care National Audit & Research Centre (ICNARC), published in the UK last month, data has shown three-quarters of critically ill UK Covid-19 patients were overweight or obese.  Weight was rated according to body mass index (BMI) - a BMI of under 25 is considered ‘healthy’ while 25 to 29 is classed as ‘overweight’ and 30 or above, ‘obese’.  It is possible the spinner falls into a category associated with a higher risk of being badly impacted by the disease.

 

 

Curtly Ambrose was fast and standing at 6 ft 8 ins, he created steep bounce from just back of a length. Nobody, but nobody found it easy to deal with the pacer, even when much of the pace had gone close to the end of a 12-year career with the West Indies.

The difficulty with negotiating Ambrose’s awkward bounce meant the ODI game was suited to him since batsmen had to go looking for quick runs but against Sir Curtly, that may be to your peril. But Curtly, who didn’t depend much on swing, also had cutters off the pitch, both inward and outward.

The angle he bowled from lent itself naturally to the ball darting in and then holding its line after pitching, bringing the outside edge of the bat into play. However, you would be wrong to think this was always going to happen, as Sir Curtly was also notorious for getting the ball to jag back prodigiously from outside off stump. That would create many instances of batsmen dragging on, or just getting bowled. Then there was his yorker. An expert at delivering it, the ball coming from 10 feet up was notoriously difficult to negotiate.

Sir Curtly was also very accurate, and so often, when he would take wickets, they would be taken in bunches because new batsmen got no wayward deliveries or warm-ups they could leave alone until they get their eye in. Sir Curtly was interested in getting you to play.

 

Career Statistics

Full name: Curtly Elconn Lynwall Ambrose

Born: September 21, 1963 (56), Swetes Village, Antigua

Major teams: West Indies, Leeward Islands, Northamptonshire, UWI Vice Chancellor's Celebrity XI, West Indies Masters

Playing role: Bowler

Batting style: Left-hand bat

Bowling style: Right-arm fast

 

ODI Career: West Indies (1988-2000)

Mat    Inns    Balls   Runs    Wkts   BBI     BBM     Ave     Econ    SR       4w     5w     10w

176      175    9353    5429     225    5/17    5/17     24.12   3.48     41.5       6        4        0

 

Career Highlights

  • Captured 225 wickets at 24.12
  • Took four 5-wicket hauls in ODIs
  • 2nd most wickets by a West Indian in ODIs

Michael Holding played his first ODI on August 26, 1976, against England.  He took 2 for 38 in the match the West Indies won by six wickets with 84 balls to spare.

Fast and accurate, Holding, over the next decade, took wickets consistently as a member of the all-conquering West Indies team. In 102 matches, Holding claimed 142 wickets at an average of 21.36 and an economy of 3.32.

In the Prudential World Cup in 1979, Holding returned 4 for 33 from his 12 overs as the West Indies dismissed India for 190 before going on to win by nine wickets with 8.3 overs to spare.

During the Benson and Hedges World Series in January 1980, Holding produced a masterful performance with the ball, returning figures of 4 for 17 from 9.3 overs as the West Indies restricted Australia to 190 all out. However, it all went for nought as the West Indies lost the match by nine runs.

Five years later and again in the Benson and Hedges World Series, Holding would deliver a match-winning spell against Australia returning his best bowling figures of 5 for 26, dismissing them for 178. The West Indies then scored 179 for 3 to score a convincing seven-wicket win.

 

Career Statistics

Full name: Michael Anthony Holding

Born: February 16, 1954 (66), Half-Way Tree, Kingston, Jamaica

Major teams: West Indies, Canterbury, Derbyshire, Jamaica, Lancashire, Tasmania

Bowling style: Right-arm fast

 

ODI Career: West Indies (1976-1987)

Mat        Inns      Balls       Runs      Wkts      BBI         BBM      Ave        Econ      SR       4w          5w         10w

102         102        5473       3034      142        5/26       5/26       21.36     3.32       38.5       5             1             0

 

Career highlights

  • Never bowled a wide in 900 overs of international cricket
  • He picked up 142 wickets in 102 ODIs
  • ODI Bowling Average: 21.36
  • Has one 5 wicket haul in ODIs

The foreboding image of a 6ft 8 inch bowler running in and delivering at lively pace from a height closer to 10 feet made many of the world’s best batsmen tremble in their boots.

That was Joel Garner for a decade.

Those characteristics, plus the ability to deliver toe-crunching yorkers with regularity also made the towering Barbadian one of the most lethal and miserly bowlers of his era.

At Lord's in 1979 he simply blew England's slim hopes away with 5 for 38, the best figures ever in a World Cup final. It included a spell of 5 wickets for 4 runs, and he was on a hat-trick twice.

 

Career Statistics

Full name: Joel Garner

Born: December 16, 1952 (67), Enterprise, Christ Church, Barbados

Major teams: West Indies, Barbados, Somerset, South Australia

Bowling style: Right-arm fast

Height: 6 ft 8 in

 

ODI Career: West Indies (1977-1987)

Mat        Inns        Balls       Runs      Wkts      BBI         BBM      Ave        Econ      SR        4w          5w         10w

98           98           5330      2752      146        5/31       5/31       18.84        3.09       36.5       2             3            0

 

Career highlights

  • Highest ranked ODI bowler per the ICC best ever bowling ratings
  • Best-ever figures in a CWC Final, 5-39 in 1979
  • He picked up 146 wickets in 98 ODIs at an average of 18.84

Former Barbadian-born England fast bowler Gladstone Small admits he is thrilled by the prospect of seeing a well-rested Jofra Archer making life extremely uncomfortable for opposition batsmen when the West Indies come to town next month.

The West Indies and England are expected to mark a return to international cricket action, with a three-Test series, which will be held in the UK, in July.  Due to ongoing fears concerning the Coronavirus, the matches will be played without fans and in a sterile environment.  Small, insists, however, that he does not expect or want to see a competitively sterile series.

Archer, who is himself another Barbadian-born national turned Englishman and former West Indies youth representative, is expected to capture a good deal of the spotlight.  The bowler who began his career in promising fashion, took 22 wickets in his first four matches at an average of just over 20.  Some of his 95-per-hour thunderbolts, often had batsmen on the ropes, unsettling even the best of them.  During the Ashes, Archer delivered frightening deliveries that struck Australian batsman Steve Smith on the arm and then around the neck area before he could react to the ball.  The bowler has struggled to reproduce such form since and has been hampered by injury.  With the hiatus from sport granting him some recovery time and being recently declared fit for the series, Small is hoping to see that fire return.

“He had a great first year in the international game.  He came back from South Africa with an injury and didn’t play the last couple of Test matches.  Hopefully the time off has allowed his injuries to heal and he can come back charging and hitting guys on the helmet as he did in that series last summer,” Small told the Mason and Guest Radio program.

"I think the term fast bowler gets offered around loosely, especially in the modern game but this guy is genuinely quick and he makes it looks so easy...it’s good to see batsmen hopping around the crease."

Former West Indies fast bowler Winston Davis has recalled the bitter disappointment of the team's unexpected loss to India in the 1983 ICC World Cup final as an unforgettable low point in a truncated career.

Then the best team in the world, the all-conquering West Indies squad had previously claimed back-to-back World Cup titles in 1975 and 79.  It looked set to be a golden ODI debut year of sorts for Davis who was called to a 1983 squad who were heavily favoured to claim the third title in a row.  In a side already chockfull of fast bowling talent he made an impact as well.  Davis was included in the side for the second group match against Australia at Headingley and splashed his name across the headlines by taking 7-51, at that time a world record return in ODIs.

He was kept in the squad for the other four group matches but could not replicate his early success after taking just one more wicket.  He was dropped for the semifinals against Pakistan with the team opting for the A-List strike squad that included Michael Holding, Joel Garner, Andy Roberts, and Malcolm Marshall.  The team posted an easy eight-wicket win over Pakistan in the penultimate match and booked a match-up with an India team that they had previously beaten by 66 runs in the preliminary round.  Despite the tag of prohibitive favorites, however, it was India who secured a stunning 43 runs win over the West Indies, registering one of the biggest upsets in cricket history.

“In 1983 West Indies came to England and were overwhelming favourites to win that World Cup, it would have to go down as one of my most disappointing times with the West Indies because there was no obvious reason that we should have lost that match and we still lost," Davis told the Mason and Guest Radio show.

“It brought us down low, that was difficult, I saw big men cry in the dressing room because it hurt.  We got over it and we went over to India and beat them pretty badly.”

By the time Dwayne Bravo had scored his first One-Day International ton in 2006, his credentials as a bonified allrounder with real talent and skill had already been understood world over.

His batting has always suggested there was more there but it was his bowling that showed an incomparable depth. He has left many batsman swinging for the fences with full slower deliveries that inexplicably drop from the sky leaving them half-way through a shot and nowhere near the pitch of the ball.

Bravo’s statistics as an international cricketer, though, have been watered down by, injuries, controversy, and the lure of T20 Leagues with deep pockets.

This has meant intermittent international cricket for Bravo, and possibly a place among the great allrounders of the game from the region.

That said, Bravo is still playing and on the cusp of producing figures any allrounder would be proud of.

With a best of 6-43, Bravo has taken 199 wickets in ODI cricket at an average of 29.51 and with a strike rate of 32.7. He only averages 25 with the bat and has two centuries and 10 half-centuries to his name.

If there is anywhere his game has not lived up to its true potential, it is there with the bat. In the field, Bravo is also a lightning rod for brilliant moments. He is fast over the outfield and athletic. He is also a safe pair of hands anywhere on the field and will run you out if you take a chance to him.

 

Career Statistics

Full name: Dwayne John Bravo

Born: October 7, 1983, Santa Cruz, Trinidad

Major teams: West Indies, Carib Beer XI, Chennai Super Kings, Chittagong Kings, Comilla Victorians, Dhaka Dynamites, DJ Bravo's XI, Dolphins, Essex, Gujarat Lions, ICC World XI, Kent, Lahore Qalandars, Maratha Arabians, Melbourne Renegades, Melbourne Stars, Middlesex, Mumbai Indians, Paarl Rocks, Peshawar Zalmi, Quetta Gladiators, RR Sarwan's XI, SC Joseph's XI, Shell Cricket Academy Invitation XI, Surrey, Sydney Sixers, Trinbago Knight Riders, Trinidad & Tobago, Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel, Trinidad & Tobago XI, University of West Indies Vice Chancellor's XI, UWI Vice Chancellor's Celebrity XI, UWI Vice Chancellor's XI, Victoria, West Indies A, West Indies Board President's XI, West Indies Board XI, Winnipeg Hawks

Playing role: Allrounder

Batting style: Right-hand bat

Bowling style: Right-arm medium

 

ODI Career (batting): West Indies (2004-2014)

Mat    Inns    NO     Runs     HS      Ave       BF       SR      100s    50s     4s      6s      Ct

164     141      24     2968      112*   25.36     3606   82.30      2       10      240     58      73      

 

ODI Career (bowling): West Indies (2004-2014)

Mat    Inns    Balls   Runs          Wkts   BBI     BBM          Ave    Econ   SR          4w     5w     10w

164    150    6511 5874          199    6/43 6/43          29.51 5.41   32.7          6       1       0

 

 

Career Highlights

  • In 164 ODI’s, he scored 2,968 runs at an average of 25.36
  • Picked up 199 wickets at an average of 29.52
  • 1 of 3 players to have 1000 runs and 50 wickets in each format of the game

Had Marva Holder been alive she would have been a very proud grandmother.

On Wednesday, her grandson, Chemar Holder, received a call from Cricket West Indies for his first tour with the men’s senior team that will play three Tests in England starting July 8.

For Holder, the leading pace bowler in the West Indies Championships that concluded in March, it was a dream come true.

“It was a good feeling yesterday (Wednesday) when I got the call to know that I was included in the 15. It was something that I was always looking forward to and now I have got the opportunity to represent my country,” he said.

Holder, 22, took 36 wickets at a healthy average of 18.91 during the championships that was ended with two rounds to go because of the Coronavirus pandemic, leaving him just four wickets shy of the target he had set at the start of the season.

Nonetheless, the West Indies selectors rewarded him with a place in the senior squad that is set to play the ‘bio-secure’ Tests series.

“Chemar Holder is an exciting young fast bowling talent who is coming off an excellent domestic First-Class season. He should enjoy bowling in English conditions. He could prove a real asset to the team in England,” said Roger Harper, Cricket West Indies Chief Selector.

Coming from a cricket-loving family, Holder has always enjoyed their support.

“If things are not going well, they all talk to me, tell me to keep my head up, everything is not going to be the same,” he said. “So I always get support from them, especially my grandmother, who passed away. She was always my big supporter.

“She stayed up all night and watched me during the U19 World Cup. Every time I play I remember her so she would be happy to find out this news if she was alive today.”

Marva Holder passed away in 2016 at the age of 72.

 

 

Veteran batsman Darren Bravo and newcomers Keemo Paul and Shimron Hetmyer will not face any backlash from Cricket West Indies for their decision not to travel to England for the three-Test series in July.

As was reported by Sportsmax.TV on Tuesday, Cricket West Indies' (CWI) selection panel named a 14-man Test squad for the proposed Sandals Tour of England 2020 that features newcomers Chemar Holder and Nkrumah Bonner.

The selectors have also named 11 reserves for the tour that includes fast bowlers Shannon Gabriel and Oshane Thomas.

The 22-year-old Holder – who is not related to captain Jason Holder – was the leading fast bowler in the West Indies Championship with 36 wickets in eight matches at 18.91 each, and was one of the successful ICC U-19 World Cup-winning side in 2016.

Bonner, 31, will be making his Test squad debut after being one of the leading batsmen in the 2020 West Indies Championship with 523 runs in seven matches at an average of 58.11.  He has previously represented the West Indies when he played two T20 Internationals back in 2011 and 2012.

Subject to the final approval of the UK Government, the West Indies will defend the Wisden Trophy in three back-to-back Test matches to be played behind closed doors,  starting on July 8.   The touring party that will all be tested for COVID-19 this week, is scheduled to fly to England on private charters on June 8.

According to CWI, the West Indies squad will live, train and play in a “bio-secure” environment during the seven weeks of the tour, as part of the comprehensive medical and operations plans to ensure player and staff safety.

The bio-secure protocols will restrict movement in and out of the venues, so the selection panel has also named a list of reserve players who will travel to train and help prepare the Test squad and ensure replacements are available in case of any injury.

Chief selector Roger Harper explained that the squad will have the time to get accustomed to the new norm in the UK but feels that they have selected a competitive squad.

“The new cricketing environment will take some getting used to. However, being in England and working together for four weeks before the first Test will give the squad the opportunity to get acclimatized and hopefully, mentally and technically adjusted to the demands of the new environment. Playing in July could be a blessing as the weather is likely to be warmer which will allow the squad more of an opportunity to play its best cricket,” he said.

“I think we have a squad that will be very competitive. More than half of the squad were involved in the victorious Test series against England in the Caribbean last year so they will bring that experience, that knowledge and belief with them and marry it to the enthusiasm and vitality of the newcomers.

“The experience of the players who toured England before in 2017 will also benefit the squad greatly. I expect that the bowling unit will once again provide a serious challenge for England and our batting will have to deliver. England is a tough team when playing in home conditions, however, I think the West Indies has a good chance of retaining the Wisden Trophy. We will have to bat consistently well to do so.”

Harper believes newcomers Holder and Bonner will benefit greatly from the tour.

“Chemar Holder is an exciting young fast bowling talent who is coming off an excellent domestic First-Class season. He should enjoy bowling in English conditions. He could prove a real asset to the team in England,” Harper said.

 “Nkrumah Bonner is an unflappable character. His ability to hold the innings together and bat through tight situations could serve the team very well.

“Jermaine Blackwood returns by sheer weight of performance in the domestic First-Class season. His patience and application were evident and that resulted in much greater consistency which I look forward to him taking back into the Test arena. His experience of playing Test cricket in England should stand him in good stead.”  

The chief selector also shed light on the inclusion of allrounder Raymon Reifer and Shannon Gabriel who is returning after undergoing surgery.

“Raymon Reifer has been around for a while and has proved to be a real competitor with both bat and ball – qualities that will add great value to the team. Shannon Gabriel is working his way back to full match fitness after his ankle operation last year.

“The four weeks leading up to the first Test will be of tremendous benefit to him. A fully fit and firing Shannon adds great potency to the bowling attack, so it is important to have him back at his best.”

West Indies are scheduled to arrive in Manchester on June 9 and will be based in Manchester for a three-week period before moving to Southampton for the first Test at the Ageas Bowl. They will then return to Manchester for the second and third matches at Emirates Old Trafford.  All these matches will be played behind closed doors and are still subject to UK Government approval.

The West Indies are scheduled to play the first Test at Ageas Bowl in Southampton from July 8-12.

The action will then move to the Emirates Old Trafford in Manchester for the second Test from July 16-20 as well as the third Test from July 24-28.

WEST INDIES TEST SQUAD: Jason Holder (Captain), Jermaine Blackwood, Nkrumah Bonner, Kraigg Brathwaite, Shamarh Brooks, John Campbell, Roston Chase, Rahkeem Cornwall, Shane Dowrich, Chemar Holder, Shai Hope, Alzarri Joseph, Raymon Reifer, and Kemar Roach.

RESERVE PLAYERS: Sunil Ambris, Joshua Da Silva, Shannon Gabriel, Keon Harding, Kyle Mayers, Preston McSween, Marquino Mindley, Shane Moseley, Anderson Phillip, Oshane Thomas, and Jomel Warrican.

 

 

 

Peter Jeffrey Dujon was as stylish with the bat as he was with the gloves. Many have called his efforts behind the stumps when the West Indies bowled a four-pronged pace attack of magnificent stature, one of the most spectacular sights of the 1980s.

Not usually required to score heavily for the West Indies from his place in the lower order, Duj never scored an ODI century but had six half-centuries, inclusive of 82 not out. Playing at a time when the scoring rate in ODIs was little better than Test cricket, Dujon’s strike rate of 67.51 was not slow, even if his average of 23.15 was a little low for a batsman of his quality. From behind the stumps he managed 204 dismissals, 21 of those stumpings.

 

Career Statistics

Full name: Peter Jeffrey Leroy Dujon

Born: May 28, 1956, Kingston, Jamaica

Major teams: West Indies, Jamaica

Batting style: Right-hand bat

Bowling style: Right-arm medium

Fielding position: Wicketkeeper

 

ODI Career: West Indies (1981 – 1991)

Mat    Inns    NO     Runs     HS     Ave      BF      SR      100s    50s   Ct      St

169     120      36     1945      82*    23.15   2881   67.51      0       6      183    21

 

Career Highlights

  • 11th most dismissals in ODIs (204)
  • Had 183 catches and 21 stumpings in 169 ODIs
  • Scored 1,945 runs in ODIs at an average of 23.15
  • scored six half-centuries in ODIs

Reports have emerged that the West Indies selectors have chosen a squad to play against England in a three-Test series in July. However, the squad will not include Darren Bravo, Keemo Paul or Shimron Hetmeyer who have all opted out of the three-Test match tour.

The squad is expected to depart from the Caribbean on June 8.

According to cricket commentator and talk show host Andrew Mason, the selectors had a hard time selecting a squad but in the end, came up with a squad that includes the recalled Jermaine Blackwood and Shannon Gabriel.

The names of the others who were selected include Captain Jason Holder, Kraigg Brathwaite, Shai Hope, Shane Dowrich, Roston Chase, Shemarh Brooks, Rahkeem Cornwall, Nkrumah Bonner, Alzarri Joseph, Chemar Holder, John Campbell, Raymon Reifer and Kemar Roach.

The West Indies will be in the United Kingdom for about four weeks and will be housed in a bio-secure environment while they get up to speed before the start of the first Test.

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) confirmed on Tuesday that a three-Test series without spectators is scheduled to start on July 8 at the Ageas Bowl.

Old Trafford will host the second and third Tests.

The venues have been selected from a group of four that submitted an interest, having had to demonstrate to the ECB board an ability to meet criteria surrounding biosecurity, medical screening-testing provision, footprint to enable social distancing and venue-cricket operations.

Edgbaston was picked as a contingency venue and will be utilised for additional training throughout July.

The Windies are due to arrive in England on June 9 and will use Old Trafford as their base for training and quarantining before travelling to the Ageas Bowl.

 

 

 

Big-hitting West Indies star Chris Gayle joined the strong chorus of athlete voices that have come out in condemnation of racial injustice and was quick to point out the fact that he also faces it in the sport of cricket.

 A growing number of athletes have spoken out in support of ongoing protests that have roiled the United States, where the killing of 46-year-old African American George Floyd by a white police officer has struck a raw nerve.

The Minneapolis cop, Derek Chauvin, was videoed pressing his knee into the back of Floyd’s neck, ignoring the desperate pleas that he was unable to breathe.  Floyd went unconscious at the scene and was later pronounced dead at hospital.   Chauvin has been charged with third-degree murder, but protests have boiled over to encompasses a global demand for an end to racial injustice and discrimination.  

In his Instagram post, which conveyed visible frustration, Gayle pointed to the issue of racism in cricket.

“I have travelled the globe and experienced racial remarks towards me because I am black, believe me, the list goes on,” Gayle said on Monday.

“Racism is not only in football, it’s in cricket too. Even within teams as a black man, I get the end of the stick. Black and powerful. Black and proud,” he said.

“Black lives matter just like any other life. Black people matter, p***k all racist people, stop taking black people for fools, even our own black people wise the p***k up and stop bringing down your own!,” Gayle wrote.

 

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