West Indies Pick Andre Russell For The World Cup 2019 > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more

Cricket news - West Indies pick Andre Russell for 2019 World Cup

Russell last played an ODI for West Indies in July 2019

Andre Russell, who last played an ODI in July 2018, has been named in West Indies' 15-man preliminary squad for the 2019 World Cup. Russell, 33, has been in sublime hitting form in the ongoing Indian Premier League, with 392 runs in nine matches at a strike-rate of 218.

Squad: Jason Holder (c), Andre Russell, Ashley Nurse, Carlos Brathwaite, Chris Gayle, Darren Bravo, Evin Lewis, Fabian Allen, Kemar Roach, Nicholas Pooran, Oshane Thomas, Shai Hope, Shannon Gabriel, Sheldon Cottrell, Shimron Hetmyer

"I spoke to Andre a few days ago. He has a few niggles. He has some pain behind his knee but he assured the selection panel that he'll be okay for the World Cup," Robert Haynes, the interim chairman of CWI, said.

"He's scored a lot of runs and we'll be using him as a batting all-rounder," interim head coach Floyd Reifer said of Russell. "He's doing very well in the IPL. We have got to manage his injuries and have three to four days rest between the games."

Darren Bravo, Shai Hope and Shimron Hetmyer make up the middle-order. The squad is loaded with all-rounders like Russell, Holder, Carlos Brathwaite and Fabian Allen, who bowls spin. Pollard showed glimpses of form in the IPL games against Kings XI Punjab and Sunrisers Hyderabad but overall has struggled to find consistency. With him not bowling, the selectors preferred other all-rounders.

"Based on the new selection policy approach which allowed us to consider a number of players that have not regularly appeared in the side over the last two years, we had a wide base of talent from which to choose," Haynes said. "There were a number of tough calls we had to make to settle on our squad of 15, including ensuring there was some continuity in the side, but we believe we have chosen a strong squad of players taking into consideration such factors as experience, fitness, team balance, current form and conditions."

Allen is the only spin-bowling option beside their main spinner Ashley Nurse. Devendra Bishoo missed out on the selection while Sunil Narine wasn't considered because of fitness."We had to look past Narine because of his fitness issue but I know, definitely, he wanted to play for the West Indies side," Haynes said.

"We had a lot of dialogue with Sunil Narine. He assured that he would have loved to play in the World Cup but unfortunately, he has an injured finger. He's getting treatment after every game in IPL and he's not capable at the moment to bowl 10 overs. He's struggling to bowl even four overs in the IPL."

Jason Holder leads the side. The openers in the squad are Chris Gayle and Evin Lewis, who last featured against Bangladesh in July last year. John Campbell was the incumbent opener for West Indies but selectors have clearly gone for experience.

Evin assured the selection panel that he's doing a lot of training in India. We must remember that we have two games in England before the World Cup starts, so we can get him in that," Haynes said of Evin's lack of international match practice in the lead-up.

"If you look at his track record, he's done very well opening the batting with Chris Gayle and we believe that he's somebody we are going to see progressing as the tour goes on."

On Nurse, Haynes said that the spinner's ability to bowl at the death gave them the confidence to fill the side with all-rounders instead of a back-up spin option. "We all believe that with Ashley Nurse's experience, and with him able to bowl the death overs, he has the ability to get the wickets and keep it tight in England."

Alzarri Joseph, who was out of IPL because of a shoulder injury, misses out. Oshane Thomas, Shannon Gabriel, Sheldon Cottrell and Kemar Roach are the fast bowlers in the squad. Nicholas Pooran has been picked as the wicketkeeper.

West Indies are due to play a tri-series in Ireland, that will also feature Bangladesh, but Jimmy Adams, the West Indies' Director of Cricket, said that the 15-man squad has been sealed and there was no intent to change it, unless injuries force otherwise.

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