Windies star Chris Gayle will feature for the Chattogram Challengers in the upcoming Bangladesh Premier League (BPL), contradicting recent reports that he was set for an extended spell away from the game.

The 40-year-old, who has expressed frustration with a lean spell of form in recent weeks, turned down a chance to represent the West Indies during the series against Afghanistan.  The player also insisted that he would not take part in the Australia Big Bash and claimed he was surprised to be listed in one of the teams for the BPL.

Chattogram insisted, however, that the player was due to appear at the tournament after being in contact with his agent.  It seems the club has now resolved the issue, insisting the player will appear for the second half of the tournament.

 "Chris Gayle has a hamstring niggle," Chattogram's managing director KM Rifatuzzaman told ESPNCricinfo.

"He will need a bit of time to be completely fit. He was always going to play in the BPL and even though we will not have him for the entire campaign, he will be available in the latter part," he added.

Gayle’s agent Rudradeep Banerjee confirmed that the player would be traveling to Bangladesh.

"In the MSL he picked up a niggle for which his doctor has advised him rest of at least two weeks," Banerjee said.

"That kind of puts him out for December. He would be free for maybe a game or two, but then to fly into Dhaka and back to West Indies doesn't make sense,” he added.

"If he would have been fit, he would have played the first leg, would have gone home on December 23 and come back again on January 4."

 

 

West Indies Test captain Jason Holder wants his side to be among the best in the world by July 2021 and goes further to expect a top-five ranking by then.

There was a time when that kind of brash talk would have been expected from a West Indian but not given the kind of lean times the region has had with bat and ball in the last 25 years.

Holder was speaking after the West Indies won its first Test match under new coach Phil Simmons in Lucknow, India, beating Afghanistan by nine wickets.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) started the World Test Championship on August 1, 2019, creating a league for the top nine Test-playing teams over two years with the top two teams qualifying for a World Test League Championship Final. The World Test Championship begins again in July of 2021.

That being said, the West Indies did not start their World Test Championship campaign very well, losing to India in the Caribbean in a largely one-sided affair.

But now, with the dominance the West Indies showed against Afghanistan, despite it not being a World Test Championship encounter, hope abounds once again.

"I think by the end of the Test Championship, I don't see it being impossible for us to be fourth or fifth in the world," said Holder.

"That would be a significant achievement in a two-year period. We've got some tough series coming up. We've got England, then South Africa coming to the Caribbean, then we've got New Zealand… all good cricket sides. But I don't think it's beyond us to beat them. We've just got to make sure we keep building and developing. Once we do that, we can compete with any side in the world. A realistic target in two years would be to be ranked three or four in the world."

According to Holder, while the game was not part of the World Test Championship, there was enough shown by the West Indies to offer a road map of what needed to be done to get into the top five.

"I've said it in the last couple of series we've played: more responsibility needs to be taken by our batters," Holder said.

"Once they do that and take the bull by the horns, I think our bowling attack has shown it can compete with any attack in the world. We've shown glimpses of brilliance, which is all well and good, but consistency is the name of the game. In order to be a world-class team, you have to be consistent with your batting. You have to get 20 wickets of course, but you have to set it up with the bat. First innings' count for a lot. If we can put teams under pressure with our first innings scores, more often than not, West Indies will be up there among the top-ranked sides in the world."

West Indies Emerging Players captain Yannic Cariah has revealed that self-belief was key to the team unlikely triumph in the Colonial Medical Insurance Super50 competition on Sunday.

At the start of the tournament, few would have given the unit hastily stitched together by Cricket West Indies a shot to win the it all.  In fact, the idea behind the Floyd Reifer-coached unit was to give player that had been rejected by their regional squads a chance to gain valuable experience.  On Sunday, a 205 runs thrashing of the Leeward Islands in the final proved they were just as good as anyone else.

After several strong performances, the team’s run in the tournament seemed to be at an end following a crushing defeat to the Trinidad and Tobago Red Force just a week ago, however, another unlikely scenario, a loss for the Guyana Jaguars to the United States, put them squarely back in contention for the top prize.

“I told the guys once we got through the semifinals, we would win the tournament because I know the caliber of players that we have.  We have a balanced team and the belief that everyone has is incredible,” Cariah said in a post-match interview.

“I have to thank the coaches, the staff who gave us the support that we needed.  Men played with niggles, men played under the weather and we still came out on top, that a fantastic achievement,” he added.

 

A four-four from spinner Kevin Sinclair and three from Yannic Cariah led the West Indies Emerging Players to a crushing 205 runs victory over and to the Colonial Medical Insurance Super50 Cup at the Queen’s Park Oval in Port of Spain on Sunday.

Sent in to bat, Leonardo Julien smashed an enterprising 83 from 85 runs as the Emerging Players piled up a daunting 293 for 7 in their 50 overs.  In their turn at the crease, the Hurricanes never got going as they were scuttled out for just 88.

Opening with Kimani Meluis, Julien got Emerging players off to a solid start before, Meluis was caught for 28 by Kacey Carty off the bowling of Jacques Taylor.  He went on to put on another 84 for the second wicket with man-of-the-match Cariah, who made 34 from 51 before being run out.  Julien was dismissed, caught by Thomas off the bowling of  Sheeno Berridge, with Emerging Players well poised at 163 for 3.  Rolando Cato (31), Kevin Sinclair (28) and Dominic Drakes (38) put on another 97 at the bottom of the order.

Chasing the big target, the Leewards were on the back foot also immediately after losing opener Montcin Hodge for one run with just 11 on the board.  When his partner Kieran Powell (13) followed soon after, caught by Da Silva off the bowling of Kevin Sinclair the writing was on the wall for the Leewards.  Amir Jangoo provided the most resistance with 20 from 43 deliveries but his innings was brought to an end by Cariah.

 

Windies star Chris Gayle extended hearty congratulations to Australian David Warner who continued his purple patch of form with an unbeaten 335 during the second Test match against Pakistan at Adelaide Oval.

The knock elevated Warner to exclusive company become one of 31 players to ever achieve the feat.   The left-hander also became the second-highest scorer ever for Australia behind Matthew Hayden’s 380 against Zimbabwe in 2003.  Gayle, who also features prominently on the list, had scored 333 against Sri Lanka in Galle in 2010, congratulated the Australian batsman via social media platform Twitter.

“Welcome to the Triple club, @davidwarner31 - Top stuff,” Gayle tweeted.

Warner, who served a 12-month ban from the sports after being punished for ball-tampering, beat Donald Bradman’s record of 299, set against South Africa in 1931-32, for the highest test score at the Adelaide Oval.  The player also produced the biggest innings ever in the day-night Test cricket format.  Australia captain Tim Paine declared at 589-3 on day two against Pakistan.

 

 

 

While the West Indies were expected to dominate their one-off Test against Afghanistan in Lucknow, India, they still had to do it and it was important to their skipper, Jason Holder, that the year ended with his side tasting some success.

The West Indies, playing in a one-off Test after T20 and ODI series against Afghanistan, were emphatic nine-wicket winners after bowling out the hosts for 187 and 120 while scoring 277 and 31-1.

The results were brought about by Rahkeem Cornwall’s 7-75 and 3-46, as well as Shamarh Brooks first-innings knock of 111.

“Really important win, you know. We had a tough series against India. Was important to finish the year well,” said Holder after his West Indies side finished the game inside three days.

Holder also pointed out that there was a certain type of unity within the West Indies squad that he believed would hold them in good stead for bigger challenges on the horizon.

“We've got a good group going. The whole management staff has been excellent. We've got good unity, we have a one-team motif. Once we love one another, the job becomes much easier on the cricket field. Hope it continues," he said.

Holder was also pleased with the way the new players in the side have come on and held their hands up to be counted when the going gets tough.

“Very pleasing to see new guys come in and take the opportunity. Shamarh did that. He scored a fifty in the last innings and followed it with a hundred here. It was full of class. And then Rahkeem getting seven in the first innings, in just his second Test, is amazing,” said Holder.

Rahkeem Cornwall’s 10-wicket haul in a nine-wicket win for the West Indies over Afghanistan in Lucknow, India, while a great start, is just one part of the game the all-rounder wants to get right for the regional side.

West Indies needed just an hour to complete a nine-wicket rout of Afghanistan on day three of the one-off Test in Lucknow.

Resuming on 109-7, Afghanistan only lasted another 7.1 overs as Windies captain Jason Holder claimed the remaining three wickets on Friday.

Afghanistan were skittled for 120 – a lead of just 31 – after Holder (3-20) sent Rashid Khan (1), Yamin Ahmadzai (1) and Afsar Zazai (7) back to the pavilion.

The Windies then eased to victory, despite Amir Hamza (1-5) getting Kraigg Brathwaite (8) caught behind, as John Campbell (19 not out) and Shai Hope (6 not out) led the team to 33-1.

Shamarh Brooks' maiden Test century and a 10-wicket haul from Rahkeem Cornwall had put the Windies in complete control on day two.

"I'm delighted with my performance," Cornwall said after being named man of the match. "Playing for West Indies was my dream as a youngster and now 10 wickets in a Test match is amazing."

The West Indies will benefit from the return of Fabian Allen and Denesh Ramdin when they go to India for a T20I series.

Allen is said to be fully recovered from a hamstring strain which put him out of the West Indies 2-1 loss to Afghanistan in Lucknow, India recently.

Ramdin played part of the series as well but had to be replaced by Shai Hope after he also went down due to hamstring issues.

The Kieron Pollard-led squad has retained newcomers Hayden Walsh Jr. and Brandon King, with an eye firmly on the T20 World Cup next year.

Andre Russell continues to be missing from both the ODI and T20I squads although the allrounder, plagued with knee injuries, was fit enough to play in the Abu Dhabi T10 recently.

According to West Indies coach Phil Simmons, who marked his return to the post with successful series against Afghanistan, India is expected to provide more of a challenge than did Afghanistan and is a good way to continue to test the ‘newbies’ in lieu of the T20 World next year.

"We have three matches in each format, so we wanted to give each squad a chance to compete against India," said Simmons.

"No disrespect to Afghanistan, but facing India will be a more difficult series. Our players really got the hang of things, with the 3-0 series win in the ODIs [against Afghanistan], and I believe we will move from strength to strength," he added.

According to Simmons, the battle for places in the T20i squad will heat up and everybody should be given a fair chance to show what they are made of.

"In the T20s this will be another chance for them to play and develop, and again, with no disrespect to Afghanistan, this should be a stronger T20 country and we will look to see how they perform against India. The next ICC T20 World Cup is in Australia and the one after that is here in India so there is a lot of preparation to be done for first for Australia. We have given the players here a chance in this series and we know we have players outside who may be coming in later on as well, so it's good to give those here another opportunity."

The T20I series begins in Hyderabad on December 6. There are two further T20Is, in Thiruvananthapuram and Mumbai, before three ODIs in Chennai, Vizag and Cuttack.

T20I squad: Fabian Allen, Sheldon Cottrell, Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Holder, Brandon King, Evin Lewis, Keemo Paul, Khary Pierre, Kieron Pollard (capt), Nicholas Pooran, Denesh Ramdin, Sherfane Rutherford, Lendl Simmons, Hayden Walsh Jr, Kesrick Williams

ODI squad: Sunil Ambris, Roston Chase, Sheldon Cottrell, Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Holder, Shai Hope, Alzarri Joseph, Brandon King, Evin Lewis, Keemo Paul, Khary Pierre, Kieron Pollard (capt), Nicholas Pooran, Romario Shepherd, Hayden Walsh Jr.

West Indies have confirmed Nicholas Pooran as the vice-captain of their Twenty20 squad for the upcoming series against India.

Pooran was handed a four-game suspension by the International Cricket Council (ICC) earlier in November after admitting to changing the condition of the ball in an ODI victory over Afghanistan – a win which sealed a 3-0 series whitewash.

Video footage showed Pooran scratching the surface of the ball with his thumbnail and he accepted the sanction put forward by match referee Chris Broad.

The 24-year-old subsequently missed the three-match T20 series against Afghanistan, which defending world champions West Indies lost 2-1.

However, Pooran has been named by a selection panel as part of the Windies T20 and ODI squads for their December matches against India.

A West Indies statement read: "The panel outlined that Nicholas Pooran will continue as vice-captain of the T20 squad, for continuity and with a view to the future, and he remains the best choice as deputy to captain Kieron Pollard."

Coach Phil Simmons is relishing putting his side's capabilities to the test against one of the world's strongest teams.

"We have three matches in each format, so we wanted to give each squad a chance to compete against India," Simmons said.

"No disrespect to Afghanistan, but facing India will be a more difficult series, especially in the ODIs. I believe we will move from strength to strength."

The first T20 takes place in Hyderabad on December 6, with further matches in the short format scheduled for December 8 and December 11.

Following the T20 series, three ODIS – on December 15, 18 and 22 – will take place in Chennai, Vizag and Cuttack respectively.

At 31 years old, Shamarh Brooks is playing in just his second Test, but he will not allow that late start to create anxiety that could mean he performs at less than his best for the West Indies.

Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) team Chattogram Challengers have threatened action against Windies star Chris Gayle if he does not show up for the upcoming tournament.

The 40-year-old left-handed superstar insisted that he would take a break from the sport earlier this week, on the back of a disappointing campaign for Jozi Stars in South Africa’s Mzansi Super League.  Gayle, who also turned down an invitation to represent the West Indies in the One Day International series against India, was picked by the Challengers to play in the tournament, which begins on December 11.

While the player insisted he was surprised to be included in the list, the franchise insists negotiations were conducted through his agent.

“His agent confirmed Chris was aware about it,” Challengers team director Jalal Yunus said.

“Now if he does not come, we will seek a player outside the draft. But I feel (Bangladesh Cricket Board) BCB should take action in such cases to keep discipline.”  Yunus claims the team had not heard from Gayle for several days ahead of his comments on Monday.

According to the BCB, all protocol was followed by the team in their drafting of the West Indian. 

“We maintain all the standard procedures when any national cricketer’s name came for the players’ draft,” Bangladesh Cricket Board chief executive Nizamuddin Chowdhury.

“Either a player or his agent can show his interest and put the name in the list.  I have checked the process, and everything was done according to a standard process.”

 

Shamarh Brooks struck a magnificent maiden Test century before Rahkeem Cornwall claimed a 10-wicket match haul on day two to leave West Indies closing in on victory against Afghanistan.

Brooks showed great skill and application in only his third Test to make 111 after John Campbell fell for 55 as the Windies posted 277 in Lucknow.

Debutant Amir Hamza took 5-74 on a turning pitch to restrict the Windies' lead to 90 runs, but Afghanistan were reduced to 109-7 at stumps - leading by only 19 and facing a heavy defeat.

Cornwall claimed brilliant Test-best figures of 7-75 in only his second international on day one and helped himself to 3-41 on Thursday.

Roston Chase (3-10) also took advantage of spin-friendly conditions at Ekana International Cricket Stadium, striking a big blow by removing Javed Ahmadi for 62 with the final ball of the day.

Campbell and Brooks got Jason Holder's side off to a solid start after resuming on 68-2, but the opener departed when Ihsanullah took a fine catch anticipating the sweep off Hamza to end a stand of 82.

Shimron Hetmyer and Chase also fell before lunch, but Brooks played positively in the morning session, before reigning it in somewhat following the break.

Shane Dowrich (42) offered support to take the Windies into the lead and Brooks attacked Rashid Khan (3-114) after the wicketkeeper-batsman was removed by Zahir Khan.

Elegant Barbados batsman Brooks had struck a six and 15 fours by the time he was bowled by impressive left-armer Hamza.

Just as in their first innings, Afghanistan got off to an encouraging start, but they were 59-4 after losing four wickets for six runs - burly spinner Cornwall taking two in one over.

Ahmadi stood firm as wickets tumbled around him, but Chase produced a devastating late burst and had the opener caught by Cornwall just before the close to leave Afghanistan on the ropes.

Rahkeem Cornwall has downplayed the idea that there was a magical formula for his performance on the first day of a one-off Test match against Afghanistan in Lucknow, India.

Afghanistan failed to capitalise on an encouraging start to the inaugural Test against West Indies as spinner Rahkeem Cornwall took seven wickets on day one.

Cornwall claimed magnificent figures of 7-75 in only his second international as Afghanistan were bowled out for 187 at the Ekana Cricket Stadium in Lucknow, having been 84-1 at one stage.

The Windies recovered from the loss of two early wickets in reply, closing on 68-2 with John Campbell and Shamarh Brooks the unbeaten batsmen.

Ibrahim Zadran (17) struck three boundaries before being caught in Cornwall's second over by Jason Holder at leg slip following a successful appeal that left the batsman seething after the Windies won the toss.

Ihsanullah (24) and Javed Ahmadi (39) were going along well before the latter sent an over-confident drive off Jomel Warrican straight to Brooks.

Ihsanullah then edged to Shai Hope as Cornwall sparked a sudden collapse, leaving Afghanistan in the mire on 111-7 after losing six wickets for just 27 runs.

Debutant Amir Hamza (34) made a start before Cornwall struck twice more in quick succession, Hamza edging to Shane Dowrich and Warrican catching Yamin Ahmadzai (18) at long-off.

Cornwall's first-innings figures were the best by a West Indies spinner since Jack Noriega's 9-95 back in 1971.

Hamza trapped Kraigg Brathwaite (11) lbw and Rashid Khan led the celebrations when Hope fell for the loss of just seven, leaving the Windies 34-2 and feeling some early pressure in their first innings.

However, Campbell (30) and Brooks (19) steadied the ship with seven boundaries between them and will look to press on when they resume on Thursday.

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