Cricket West Indies selectors have called all-rounder Fabian Allen to replace Khary Pierre for the third and final T20 International against India in Guyana on Tuesday.

West Indies T20 captain Carlos Brathwaite has come to the defence of injured teammate Andre Russell, who he believes has come in for some harsh press after a number of injuries have impacted his international output.

After feeling discomfort during the Global T20 Canada, Andre Russell asked to be excused from duty for the West Indies in the first T20 internationals against India in the Caribbean.

During a pre-match press conference, Brathwaite, made it clear where he stood on the issue.

Brathwaite tackled those who thought Russell did a disservice to the West Indies’ World Cup hopes, saying:

"And speaking for myself as captain of the T20 team and speaking for myself as Andre's friend, whenever we speak about playing for West Indies, that's always his main goal. And we've seen in the World Cup -whether he was 100% or not, it's debatable - but the fact that he wanted to be at the World Cup, wanted to pull on the shirt and wanted to perform for the people in the West Indies and his mates in the dressing room, I think, is testament to the person he is. And I think we need to start commending the fact that he actually tries to get on the park and stop lambasting the fact that he probably doesn't stay on it till the end of the 50 overs or the 20 overs,” said Brathwaite.

According to the skipper, the more important part of the equation, is Russell’s willingness to play for the West Indies.

"I think he's been knocked in the press a bit because of his injury woes. And I think it's easy for us to see him hobbling around the field and just take for granted that he's injured but we can also look at it on the other side and say he can be home, he could be elsewhere and not trying to play for the West Indies.

Russell, Brathwaite revealed, would have played in these T20s if prodded to do so, despite his less-than-100 per cent fitness status.

"Even against my better judgment, I told him to sit out this series, but he really wanted to play, he really wanted to come and show off his skills and show off what he does in franchise cricket for the West Indies. Unfortunately, he took another knock and he doesn't think that if he comes here that he'd be doing justice to other people who could be here and are 100%. Obviously, he's a big loss, not only on the field but off the field. In the dressing room, in and around the team, he's a big character, very jovial and in my eyes, a leader in the dressing room as well,” said Brathwaite.

The skipper then asked that the press look at the bigger picture, because there were other tournaments the West Indies have an eye on doing well at, tournaments Russell will be important to.

“ … Obviously, if we need to get him ready for the Twenty20 World Cup, we have to do without him for a couple of series, I prefer that than pushing him in this series and making a long term injury.”

West Indies cricket selectors have recalled Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard to the squad to play the first two T20 internationals against India early next month.

Former Windies women’s captain and Trinidad and Tobago player, Merissa Aguilleira, has called time on her international cricket career. 

Cricket West Indies has been good at improving its financial health in recent times but two extra T20I games against England have not been one of those things, with Sky Sports, the Windies-England series’ broadcast partners, refusing to pay more for the games. 

Windies Women ended a three-test tour of Pakistan a losing note as the hosts rebounded to score a 12-run win in Karachi on Sunday.

After winning the toss and choosing to bat, Pakistan Women, led by 53 off 40 balls from Nida Dar, put 150 runs on the board after their 20 overs.  The hosts lost six wickets in the process.

 In response, Windies star all-rounder Deandra Dottin was her usual belligerent self and batted freely to crack 46 from 29 balls but the team was restricted to 138 in their 20 overs.  Things began badly for the regional team when Kycia Knight was dismissed for a duck and Shermaine Campbelle following soon after.

Except for Dottin, the Windies never really got into the run chase and wickets fell at regular intervals.  Anam Amin was Pakistan’s best bowler after claiming figures of 3 for 34.  Pakistan were beaten by 71 runs in the first game but pressed the West Indies all the way in the second, tying the match before going down in the Super Over as Dottin was on point again. 

The two teams now travel to Dubai to play an ODI series that is part of the ICC's qualifiers for the World Cup.

 

A 13-member West Indies women's squad arrived in Karachi on Wednesday for the first visit to Pakistan by a non-Asian women's team in 15 years. 

Opening bat Rashada Williams is the only new player named to a Windies Women squad named for a two-week camp in Antigua as they prepare for their upcoming tour of Pakistan later this month.

Bangladesh opener Soumya Sarker insists the team is ready to battle to salvage the T20 series against the Windies after going down by eight wickets in the first match at Sylhet International Stadium on Monday.

Despite dominating the regional team for large parts of the tour so far, the Bangladeshi’s were able to find very little answers against the Caribbean team.  Windies fast bowler Sheldon Cottrell led the way with a career-best 4 for 28, while Shai Hope, who made 297 runs in the three-match ODI series, hit a whirlwind 55-run innings off just 23 balls.

After being dominated with both bat and ball by the reigning World champions, however, Sarker has vowed the team will recover.

“We are aiming a turnaround in the series strongly. In the past we have won the series against West Indies with a strong comeback after trailing 1-0. We are targeting to repeat it.  We have discussed our mistakes form the first match like too many early wickets at the beginning. We will ensure that such mistakes will not be repeated in the remaining matches and produce a better display of cricket all-around,” said Soumya

 

Opening batsman Evin Lewis and fast-bowlers Sheldon Cottrell and Kesrick Williams have been named to a 15-man Windies squad for their upcoming T20 series against their hosts Bangladesh.

Rovman Powell will captain the Windies side for their three-match ODI series against Bangladesh on December 9, 11, and 14.

Johnny Grave, Cricket West Indies Chief Executive Officer, is not pleased with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) who revised their eligibility criteria in a bid to make sure that Barbadian paceman Jofra Archer can turn out for the country.

According to Grave, the concern is not just over Archer, but that other talented Caribbean players could be lured away from playing for their region, using the same ‘long-term county contracts’ that have paved the way for Archer.

The Windies were hoping they would have had Archer for the World Cup in 2019, but the exciting 23-year-old, one of the brightest prospects in world cricket today, made it clear, his intentions to turn out for England whenever eligibility requirements were met.

The ECB had previously required that for a player to be eligible to turn out for England, they must have seven years of residency under their belt, however, last week that was reduced to just three.

“We respect Jofra’s decision, the rules allow him to [switch country]. But on a personal level, and as an Englishman, I don’t like the concept of the ECB poaching players who have been part of another system up to the age of 19,” said Graves.

“I hope no other West Indian cricketers follow that path and hope it doesn’t lead to counties doing their talent ID in the Caribbean, taking our players into the public school system and then on to offering them lucrative long-term county contracts and then possibly on to playing for England.”

Interestingly, Archer’s first game for England could very well be in the Caribbean next year when England tour the region for three Tests, five One-Day Internationals and three Twenty20s from January 23 to March 10. Archer would become eligible to play for England in March, right in time for the T20 fixtures.

Does Nicholas Pooran have a real future as part of the Windies cricket team?

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