HOVE, England, CMC – West Indies’ bumpy start to their tour of England continued yesterday when rain forced the abandonment of the first day of their opening tour game against Sussex.
Heavy overnight and morning rain left the Probiz County Ground damp and while conditions had cleared significantly by 9 am, umpires called off play at 1:40 pm, putting a dent in the tourists preparations for the first Test at Lord’s later this month.
Captain Darren Sammy remained upbeat despite the setback, noting the Windies were prepared for the struggles with the wet English weather.
“Everybody wants to get on the park but that’s the weather. We don’t have control over that,” Sammy said.
“We’re not in the Caribbean where it’s nice and warm. This is England where it’s going to be cold so we’ve programmed our minds to get over it.
“I’m quite used to these conditions but it’s been a while since we’ve played cricket here. Most of the guys have experience here. It’s England. You know it’s going to be cold. The ball’s going to sting your hands [and] all that stuff.”
With the disappointment of the washout, it also emerged yesterday that West Indies were without three members of its touring party because of visa and travel issues.
Guyanese batsman Narsingh Deonarine and Assad Fudadin have been held up in Jamaica sorting out visa problems while Jamaican all-rounder Marlon Samuels was reported to be en route from India where he has been campaigning in the Indian Premier League.
The adverse weather, which has wreaked havoc on the start of the new County Championship season, has also plagued the Windies since they arrived here on Wednesday.
It confined them to an indoor session on Thursday and subjected them to frigid temperatures on Friday despite a three-hour workout.
The three-day match against Sussex is one of two tour matches before the first Test, with West Indies scheduled to face England Lions – the country’s A side – in a four-day match at Northampton starting next Thursday.