West Indies have omitted two blockbuster names in Shimron Hetmyer and Evin Lewis in their squad to tour Sri Lanka for three ODIs. The tour of the island nation also includes two T20Is in addition to the 50-over games. The two stalwarts miss out on touring Sri Lanka, owing to failing fitness tests as confirmed by the chief of the selectors, Roger Harper.
Darren Bravo, who last played an ODI in the 2019 World Cup against Bangladesh, has been recalled to the 15-man squad that would travel to Sri Lanka. The 30-year old top-order batsman has earned his place in the side, owing to a remarkable domestic season in which he mustered a tally of 481 runs at a stunning average of 96.20.
All-rounder Rovman Powell also makes the cut on the backdrop of an impressive show of his own, amassing 412 runs at a staggering strike rate of 160.93 for Jamaica. Spin bowler Fabian Allan, who couldn’t play the series against India due to a knee injury, also finds a place in the 15-man party. The squad, which departs on Saturday for a pre-series camp in Colombo, will also play two practice games before the first ODI on the 22nd of February.
Roger Harper laments the absence of Shimron Hetmyer and Evin Lewis:
Chief selector and former cricketer Roger Harper conceded that Evin Lewis and Shimron Hetmyer would be sorely missed. He primarily spoke in favour and highly of Lewis, who he claimed to be their mainstay in the batting line-up in the series against Ireland with his great temperament and composure throughout. Lewis was the leading run-getter against the Irishmen, accumulating 208 runs in three innings.
“Evin Lewis and Shimron Hetmyer missed out due to the fact that they came up short in the fitness test. Lewis was the team’s best batsman in the recent series against Ireland where he batted with great composure and proved the bedrock for the team’s series win. Hetmyer appeared to be getting his act together and was an integral part of the team’s batting group.” Harper stated as quoted by ESPN Cricinfo.
The first ODI begins on the 22nd of February in Colombo before moving on to Hambantota and Kandy for the second and third game on the 26th of February and 1st of March respectively.
West Indies squad: Fabian Allen, Sunil Ambris, Darren Bravo, Roston Chase, Sheldon Cottrell, Jason Holder, Shai Hope (wk), Alzarri Joseph, Brandon King, Keemo Paul, Kieron Pollard (captain), Nicolas Pooran, Rovman Powell, Romario Shepherd, Hayden Walsh Jr.