ST JOHN’S, Antigua, – Rookie fast bowler Jason Holder has been appointed the West Indies’ new one-day captain, in a shock move announced yesterday by the West Indies Cricket Board.
The 23-year-old, who stands six-feet, seven-inches, will take over the reins of team from seasoned all-rounder Dwayne Bravo who has been sacked after just 19 months in charge and also dropped from the 15-man squad named to face the South Africans in a five-match series next month. Holder, highly regarded among his peers and by regional cricket authorities, has played one Test and 21 One-Day Internationals since making his international debut in February last year.
The WICB thanked Bravo for his service but said Holder’s appointment was with a view to the future development of the team.
“Jason is one of the good, young players who we believe will form part of the long-term future of West Indies Cricket,” chief selector Clive Lloyd said.
“We expect him to be around for a very long time. He is a young man with a very bright future. We have invested in him. He was part of High Performance Centre and he also played for the West Indies Under-19 Team and the West Indies A Team. “He has played ODIs for the West Indies before and has done well. We know he will continue to grow and demonstrate leadership. He has a very good cricketing brain and has the makings of a very good leader.” Holder’s first assignment will be the five-match ODI series against South Africa starting next month but more significantly, he will now lead the Caribbean side to the cherished ICC World Cup in Australia and New Zealand next February. Lloyd said with the World Cup approaching, now was the time to make the transition of leadership. “The selectors decided that now is the time to make the transition and Jason will have people around him to help and guide him,” said the legendary former West Indies captain.
“Some might say it’s close to the time of next year’s ICC Cricket World Cup in Australia and New Zealand but we know that we have a good One-Day team which can do very well.”
Holder has been widely viewed as having exceptional leadership qualities, and has already served as vice-captain of the West Indies A team as well as of the Barbados Tridents in the Caribbean Premier League.
He made his Test debut last year in his hometown Barbados, stroking a half-century to further bolster his credentials as a genuine all-rounder.
Holder will lead a 15-man squad which includes uncapped fellow Barbadian Jonathan Carter, who has campaigned extensively with the West Indies A team in recent years.
There is no room for former ODI captain Darren Sammy. Fast bowler Kemar Roach, who was expected to be a member of the squad, sustained an injury during the opening Test in Centurion and has been ruled out.
The WICB said a replacement for Roach would be named shortly.
SQUAD – Jason Holder (Captain), Sulieman Benn, Carlos Brathwaite, Jonathan Carter, Sheldon Cottrell, Narsingh Deonarine, Leon Johnson, Chris Gayle, Denesh Ramdin, Andre Russell, Marlon Samuels, Lendl Simmons, Dwayne Smith, Jerome Taylor.