Hours before the series-opener against India, West Indies have suffered a big blow with their star man Andre Russell ruling himself out of the first two T20Is. The hard-hitting batsman took the decision after experiencing “some discomfort” while playing in the Global T20 League in Canada. Jason Mohammed has replaced Andre Russell in the squad.
Russell was picked in the squad subject to a fitness test but failed to recover in time. He consequently informed the selection panel about his unavailability according to a release from Cricket West Indies.
“We welcome Jason Mohammed into the squad for the first two T20 matches here in Florida. He is a player with lots of experience in all three formats and – having done well for Trinidad & Tobago as well as Guyana Amazon Warriors,” said Floyd Reifer, West Indies’ interim head coach.
“It’s difficult to the fill the shoes of someone like Andre Russell, who has dominated T20 cricket all over the world – and won the ICC T20 World Cup for the West Indies on two occasions, but we believed Jason is capable of good performances and we back him to perform at this level and help us win games a well,” added Reifer.
Also Read: Sourav Ganguly Expresses Desire To Become India Head Coach
Russell was in devastating form in this year’s Indian Premier League which helped him make it to West Indies’ World Cup squad. He, however, failed to do well and had also struggled with his fitness. A knee injury eventually ruled him out of the tournament.
India, meanwhile, will be looking to hit the ground running when they take on the reigning T20 world champions. The Men in Blue exited the World Cup at the semifinal stage and would be desperate for a solid start to the tour. India will play three T20Is, three ODIs and two Tests against West Indies.