Former West Indies captain and top all-rounder Jason Holder has urged caution in the development of young fast bowler Jayden Seales.

Despite some amount of debate surrounding the selection of the inexperienced player, the performance of the 19-year-old Seales was one of the few bright sparks in a wretched series for the regional team.

The teenager, who came into the line-up with the absence of Shannon Gabriel due to injury, claimed figures of 3 for 34 and overall figures of 3 for 75.  He did not get the chance at a second innings as South Africa only needed to bat once.  Prior to his debut, Seales had only played one First-Class match. 

While admitted to being delighted by the young bowler’s potential, Holder recommends caution as a necessity in ensuring he lives up to his full potential.

“I’m very excited for Jayden.  It was special to see not just the way he bowled but also the way the team rallied around him,” Holder told members of the media on Tuesday.

“I was actually commenting on his first Test wicket and everyone was saying they really enjoyed how he got around it.  I honestly felt like I was taking my first wicket when Jayden got his wicket,” he added.

“The most impressive thing for me about Jayden's debut is the sustenance of his consistency.  He was there, thereabouts nagging.  He asked tons of questions at multiple stages of the game, which is impressive for a 19-year-old.”

The sky’s the limit for him if he can just stay fit.  I just hope that we manage him well.  When I say manage him well, we still have to understand that for Jayden that’s his second first-class game, first Test match.  The body will take a little bit of time to adjust to the workload and we have to be careful not to bowl him to the ground.  I think sometimes we get excited by a young prospect like Jayden and throw him into all formats.  I would like to see a gradual build-up with him.”

South African pace bowler Lungi Ngidi has hailed the potential of West Indies debutant Jayden Seales who claimed a hat-trick on debut for the regional team earlier this.

The West Indies have had a mediocre start to the first Test, with the young bowler’s performance on the first day, where he claimed 3 for 34 one of the few highlights of the match so far.

The inclusion of the 19-year-old, in the absence of lead strike bowler Shannon Gabriel, had proven to be somewhat of a controversial decision.  Critics insisted that the player’s limited experience, having played one First-Class match prior to his debut, meant that more experienced bowlers were being overlooked in his favour.

Ngidi, who himself lit up the first day for South Africa after claiming a sensational 5 for 19, insisted that he had so far been impressed with the young bowler’s talent.

 "He is a bit of a danger and a very exciting future lies ahead for West Indies with him in the line-up," Ngidi told members of the media.

"I was keeping a really good eye on him and his seam presentation is pretty much what I tried to do when I was bowling. I think he has a great wrist behind the ball and a very clean action and he seems he can run in all day."

Debutant West Indies fast bowler Jayden Seales insists looking to maintain consistency was critical to his success, on a day when his hat-trick spell provided a rare bright spot on a tough start against South Africa.

The 19-year-old Seales ended with figures of 34 for 3.  His fiery response proved critical in ensuring the tourist ended the day with some doubts in mind at 128 for 4, some 38 runs ahead, and in command of the Test match early, but things could have been much worse.

Earlier on, Lungi Ngidi claimed a jaw-dropping 5 for 19 and Anrich Nortje 4 for 35 as the two combined to bowl out the spell-struck West Indies for 97 in the first innings.  Following the dismissal of South Africa opener and captain Dean Elgar, by Kemar Roach, Seales fired back, his deliveries removing Aiden Markram, Keegan Petersen, and Kyle Verreynne.

“I just tried to remain as consistent as possible.  To try and create pressure and don’t try anything too different.  I do that and I get wickets,” Seales said following the day’s play.

Despite a difficult start for the West Indies, however, the young bowler believes the team remains in the game.

“I don’t think we are out of the game.  Today is just the first day, we didn’t bat as well as we wanted to but I think we pulled it back with the way that we bowled today.”

 

CWI chairman of selectors, Roger Harper, has defended the selection of young fast bowler Jayden Seales, despite the player’s lack of experience at the regional level.

With strike bowler Shannon Gabriel out of the upcoming series against South Africa, due to injury, the 19-year-old Seales made it into the final 13-man squad on the back of an impressive performance in the recent West Indies Best vs Best practice match.

The young fast bowler took five wickets overall, including a three-wicket burst that saw him remove the top order of West Indies Best B in the second innings. 

With only one first class match under his belt, however, some have objected to the young bowler being picked ahead of those with a lot more experience.  Harper has insisted, however, that the player’s performance in the practice match was enough to show the selectors plenty of what they were looking for.

“I saw a young bowler play in games where Test players and the best of our regional first class players were playing and he performed exceedingly well, better than a number of players that have been playing first class cricket over a number of years,” Harper told members of the media.

“The match was not classified as a first class match but those matches were played by the best of our regional first class players and he did exceedingly well.  So, I like to think that if he can perform well in those games against those players, he had the potential to transfer that to Test games,” he added.

The series against South Africa will get underway at the Daren Sammy Cricket Ground in St Lucia, on Thursday.

 

Shai Hope, Kieran Powell, and Jayden Seales have been included in a provisional 17-man squad for the upcoming Betway Test Series against South Africa set to begin on June 10. Opening batsman, John Campbell, however, has not made the cut.

Cricket West Indies (CWI) and the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) will continue to offer development opportunities to some of the best young West Indians during the ninth edition of the CPL, which takes place in St Kitts later this year.

Since 2019, and for the third consecutive season, 12 players have been drafted, retained or signed into the two mandatory Emerging Player positions in each of the six CPL franchises.

Each CPL franchise will have to field an Emerging Player a minimum of five times during the tournament, ensuring that these players get at least some competitive playing experience and the opportunity to train with some of the best players and coaches from across the Caribbean, and around the world.

The list of 12 retained and drafted players include recent West Indies Men’s Test and T20I debutants Joshua Da Silva and Kevin Sinclair who will feature for St Kitts & Nevis Patriots and Guyana Amazon Warriors respectively. At relatively young ages, these two players have notably risen through the CWI development ranks in the last 18 months since featuring for the victorious West Indies Emerging team in the 2019 CG Insurance Super50 Cup.

Four of the Emerging Players will be experiencing the CPL for the first time: Joshua James, Kirk McKenzie, Kadeem Alleyne and Leonardo Julien.  McKenzie and James were members of the West Indies Under-19 side that featured in the last ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup, held in South Africa in 2020, who now have a chance to develop their white ball skills with the Jamaica Tallawahs.

CWI’s Director of Cricket, Jimmy Adams congratulated the selected players saying: “CWI is extremely happy for the 12 Emerging Players who will participate in this year’s CPL tournament. The Emerging Player programme is now a focal point of our elite player pathway and the CPL plays a critical role in exposing these young players to elite players and high level competition. We have no doubt that the experience gained by these young players will be a significant factor in establishing the next generation of international players within this format of the game.”

Reflecting on the third year of the CWI and CPL collaboration, CWI’s High-Performance Manager Graeme West said: “The Emerging Player Programme underlines the growth and strength of the CWI and CPL partnership. In a year where running high-performance activities for our talented young players has been challenging, CPL will provide the 12 emerging players a great learning and development opportunity.”

He continued: “With seven players retained from the 2020 CPL, this draft represents a reward for the performances and potential that the franchises saw from the Emerging Players in Trinidad last year. I’m delighted that three players from last year’s West Indies Under-19 squad have been drafted for the first time with McKenzie, James and Julian joining team-mates Nedd, Young and Seales who will look to build on their performances in 2020. The drafting of Kadeem Alleyne is really significant as it demonstrates to all young cricketers in the Caribbean that outstanding performances in local tournaments can be recognized and rewarded.”

 

The full list of drafted, retained and signed Emerging Players for their respective CPL teams is as follows:

Joshua Bishop​​ (Barbados) - Retained by Barbados Tridents

Nyeem Young (Barbados) - Retained by Barbados Tridents

Ashmead Nedd​​ (Guyana) - Retained by Guyana Warriors

Kevin Sinclair (Guyana) - Retained by Guyana Warriors

Joshua James* (Trinidad & Tobago) - Drafted by Jamaica Tallawahs

Kirk McKenzie​​* (Jamaica) - Drafted by Jamaica Tallawahs

Dominic​ Drakes (Barbados) - Retained by St Kitts & Nevis Patriots

Joshua Da Silva​​ (Trinidad & Tobago) - Retained by St Kitts & Nevis Patriots

Kadeem Alleyne* (Barbados) - Drafted by St Lucia Zouks

Jeavor Royal (Jamaica) - Drafted by St Lucia Zouks

Leonardo Julien* (Trinidad & Tobago) - Signed by Trinbago Knight Riders

Jayden Seales​​ (Trinidad & Tobago) - Retained by Trinbago Knight Riders

 

John Campbell scored a patient century today as Chase’s XI reached 280 for 7 at stumps of the first day of the four-day practise match against Brathwaite’s XI at the Coolidge Cricket Ground.

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