Patrolling the Boundary – a view from the outfield
The new system looks very interesting, and gives room for optimism.
But how does it work? Will players on tour in India and South Africa be part of each franchise’s initial squad of 15? Presumably not.
So then do they come in as ‘extras’ when they return to the region? Or will each franchise re-select its squad of 15 after Christmas?
They’ve said there’ll be 90 (perhaps 105) contracted players. So will there be 15 players on central contracts, similar to the ECB structure for Team England? Will the selectors then get to say if an off duty international should go back and supplement his island team?
A one-stop WI Rumshop round-up of Caribbean cricket comment, news & views
(Please note that the next Quick Singles round-up will be in October when I return from vacationing in Chicago)
Another week in WI cricket, another week of off-field upheaval – and on-field success. The Caribbean is lately confuting its sleepy reputation with regard to the region’s no.1 game, amid a remarkable hive of activity.
DO: “The West Indies have won their 500th Test Match. An hour or so before the end of play today, many of us thought we’d be turning on our TVs the same time in the morning. But no, it’s all over. I’ll be looking closely at the game with my very good friend, Dr Andrew Forde.”
AF: “Glad to be here discussing something positive about WI cricket.”
DO: “And it’s great to also have with us on the line, Reds Perreria. Is St Lucia a happy place this evening, Reds?”
RP: “Yes. Test Match victories these days are quite scarce, and this is a 2-0 victory. Maybe we could have been a little more clinical, and some feel we should’ve won in two and a half days. St Vincent was a very slow track. This was a much better track for fast bowlers, but a partnership of over a hundred held up WI. It’s a new look team with Johnson being introduced and Blackwood coming back in after getting blooded v NZ. But we have to think of the battles ahead. How competitive will this side be against India where there’ll be spin and swing? And against South Africa which will be pace like fire, with a fair amount of short stuff? Of this squad I’m not sure if Kirk Edwards will be maintained. He needs a score. But if you take this twelve and add Gayle, Narine and Simmons you have the makings of a team. They may take Nikita Miller in place of Shillingford because without the doosra he’s like a tiger without teeth. And they may look for a young fast bowler. It’s starting to take shape. But we can’t expect Clive Lloyd to wave a magic wand to produce a world beating team. It’s going to take a lot longer than most West Indians think.
Around the World in 2 – a few occasional off-breaks
Each week for Mason & Guests I compile and broadcast a brief summary of cricket events outside the Caribbean, with a few “Did You Know, Andrew?” facts thrown in. Here’s this week’s round-up:
“Shiv Chanderpaul finished the Bang series without a batting avg, after scores of 85no, 84no & 101no. Shiv became the 11th batsman to score 30 Test 100s, & in the last 2 yrs he’s scored 1,342 runs at an avg of 95.85. Kemar Roach moved into the top 10 of the ICC’s Test bowling rankings, & may climb higher when they’re updated, since Saeed Ajmal, who is in 9th, has been suspended. It’s emerged Ajmal was bending his arm a wopping 40% – the allowance is for 15%.
“WI Women are 2-0 up in their ODI series with NZ. Tremayne Smartt took 5-24 in the 1st game as they won by 5 wkts; & Anisa Mohammed took her 100th ODI wkt – being the 1st to do so for WI Women. In the 2nd match, Deandra Dottin made 82no as WI won by 65 runs.