GROS ISLET, St Lucia, CMC – Chief selector Clyde Butts believes the inclusion of opener Adrian Barath will give West Indies added stability at the top for the two remaining One-Day Internationals against Australia.
Barath was the only change to the Windies 13-man squad announced on Wednesday for the two games at the Beausejour Cricket Ground here today and Sunday.
He replaces the out-of-form Kieran Powell who has struggled with 20 runs from his three innings in the Arnos Vale tripleheader.
“It was really a straight swap between Adrian Barath and Kieran Powell. We know that Adrian was out with an injury and came back subsequently against Guyana and is fully fit now and batted very well against them,” Butts said.
“He got a brilliant 114 and we expect him to bring that same form and ability into the squad.
“When we look at the top we just think we need a little more stability, we need somebody who can give us a start and to give us a little partnership so that we can grow from there.”
Last weekend’s match against Guyana was Barath’s first competitive game since he injured his finger against Barbados in the third round.
The spell on the sidelines did not seem to affect Barath as he produced a classy innings to help T&T grab first innings points over Guyana in their Regional Four-Day match.
“He batted for a long time for his runs and looked comfortable at the crease. He did not show any signs of discomfort,” said Butts.
“He has played at this level and done well before, so we expect him to fit right back in and contribute.”
The five-match series is level at 1-1 after West Indies lost their first game by 64 runs but rebounded to win the second by five wickets. Tuesday’s third game ended in a dramatic tie.
Butts said he believed the Windies had an excellent chance of still taking the series.
“The team did some good things in the first three matches and we are seeing signs of improvement,” he noted.
“We are in with a chance of winning the series and we believe the players selected in this squad have the ability to do just that.”