WEST Indies One Day International (ODI) captain Jason Mohammed said his inexperienced team will be counting on self-belief when the regional team begins a three-match ODI series in Dhaka, on Wednesday, from 1.30 am TT time.
The build-up to the series has been less than ideal for the regional team. Several senior players declined the opportunity to tour for the three-match ODI series and the two-match Test series. The ODI series will be played from Wednesday until Monday, before the Test series is played from February 3 to 15.
A Cricket West Indies (CWI) media release on December 29, said, “The following players declined the opportunity to tour due to covid19 related concerns or personal fears: Jason Holder, Kieron Pollard, Darren Bravo, Shamarh Brooks, Roston Chase, Sheldon Cottrell, Evin Lewis, Shai Hope, Shimron Hetmyer and Nicholas Pooran. Fabian Allen and Shane Dowrich are unavailable due to personal reasons.”
Last week, West Indies received another blow as a player tested positive for covid19.
“Following PCR tests administered on Wednesday, January 13, CWI can confirm that Hayden Walsh Jnr has tested positive for covid19 and will now undergo a period of self-isolation,” a CWI media release said, last Thursday.
The other players were not affected by Walsh’s positive result as all players were staying in self-isolation when Walsh tested positive. The leg spinner did not train with his team-mates.
On Tuesday, India pulled off an unlikely victory over Australia in the fourth Test match to win the series 2-1 in Australia.
What made the victory more remarkable is that India were missing many of its first-choice players, mainly because of injury including fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah.
India were also without its captain Virat Kohli as he returned to India following the first Test for the birth of his child.
Asked if the India series victory inspired them, Mohammed said,
“Obviously that is something we will look to.”
Mohammed added, “Obviously it depends on the day, how you play…there is a lot of guys will be making their debut, but I think once you have that belief within yourself and within the team that you can do well and you can win games these things are achievable. It showed as you said in the India versus Australia (series).”
Mohammed said West Indies must have a positive mentality. “We obviously have the same mindset that we just looking to play some good cricket starting tomorrow (Wednesday) and hopefully the results can go on our side as well.”
Speaking about the loss of Walsh on the eve of the first ODI, Mohammed said, “Obviously it is a big loss for us. He would have been the most senior spinner within the team so it is a huge loss for us, but in saying that there is Akeal Hosein who is now our frontline spinner and myself and Andre McCarthy.”
Walsh is the second player to test positive since the ODI squad was announced on December 29. Fast bowler Romario Shepherd returned a positive test days after being selected on the ODI team for the Bangladesh tour. Shepherd was still in his home country of Guyana when he tested positive.
Jason Mohammed (captain), Sunil Ambris (vice-captain), Nkrumah Bonner, Joshua Da Silva, Keon Harding, Jahmar Hamilton, Chemar Holder, Akeal Hosein, Alzarri Joseph, Kyle Mayers, Andre McCarthy, Kjorn Ottley, Rovman Powell, Raymon Reifer, Hayden Walsh Jnr
Kraigg Brathwaite (captain), Jermaine Blackwood (vice-captain), Nkrumah Bonner, John Campbell, Rahkeem Cornwall, Joshua Da Silva, Shannon Gabriel, Kavem Hodge, Alzarri Joseph, Kyle Mayers, Shayne Moseley, Veerasammy Permaul, Kemar Roach, Raymon Reifer, Jomel Warrican
Wednesday: 1st ODI, SBNCS, Dhaka
Friday: 2nd ODI, SBNCS, Dhaka
Monday: 3rd ODI, ZACS, Chattogram
January 28-31: Four-day warm-up, M.A. Aziz Stadium, Chattogram
February 3-7: 1st Test Match, ZACS, Chattogram
February 11-15: 2nd Test Match, SBNCS, Dhaka