ST JOHN’S, Antigua, CMC – Two teenagers were among four newcomers included in a 15-member West Indies squad for the ICC Women’s World Cup but the experienced duo of Britney Cooper and Stacy-Ann King have been overlooked for the all-important campaign in England starting next month.
Trinidad and Tobago batsmen Reniece Boyce and Felicia Walters, along with the Windward Islands pair of Quiana Joseph and Akeira Peters, will join an otherwise experienced unit for the June 24 to July 25 showpiece.
The side, which will again be captained by the highly-rated Stafanie Taylor, includes the likes of exciting Barbados opener Hayley Matthews, veteran and former skipper Merissa Aguilleira and explosive all-rounder Deandra Dottin.
“The team is composed of a mixture of youth and experience. Performances in this year’s Women’s Regional Super50 Tournament along with the form of incumbent players over the last few international tours were taken into consideration,” chief selector Courtney Browne said.
“The panel felt that we have enough experience in the side and that all four players bring a specific skill-set to the team. It should also be noted that all four players are products of our last training camp for emerging women’s players held last year.
“We also feel at this time that these players, although not as experienced, have shown improvement and can add value to our squad. We would encourage those that missed out to continue working and improving their skills, so that they can be considered for future tours.”
Boyce, a 19-year-old wicketkeeper/batsman from reigning champions T&T, can count herself extremely lucky after scoring 64 runs at an average of 16, with a highest score of 31, in the recently completed Women’s Super50 in St Vincent.
Her more experienced teammates, Cooper (107) and King (106) – with 115 One-Day Internationals among them – scored more and also chipped in with half-centuries.
Joseph, meanwhile, a 16-year-old fast bowler from St. Lucia along with her Grenadian teammate Peters, a 23-year-old left-handed all-rounder, can also consider themselves fortunate.
Left-armer Joseph made the squad on the basis of her seven wickets at 15 runs apiece while Peters picked up five wickets and scored 20 runs.
Experienced Guyana fast bowler Subrina Munroe, who was impressive with 13 wickets at nine runs apiece, was however overlooked.
Walters, a 25-year-old opening batsman and part-time spin bowler, was among the tournament’s leading scorers and secured her place in the squad by gathering 149 runs at an average of nearly 50.
Meanwhile, talented all-rounder Jamaican Shanel Daley has been included three years after she played her last match for West Indies, after overcoming her fitness issues.
However, the 28-year-old, who has played 64 ODIs, had a poor Super50 campaign, with scores of 4, 3, 17 and 0 to end with a paltry 24 runs in total. She fared no better with the ball, taking four wickets.
Browne said her injury worries were now behind her and she would be managed carefully going forward.
“Shanel’s ability as a player has never been in question. She however, had some injury issues over the last few years,” he noted. “Those issues are now under control and our medical personnel, as well as Oba Gulston, the physiotherapist for the women’s team, will continue to monitor and manage her.”
West Indies, the reigning Twenty20 World champions, were good enough to reach the final of the last Women’s World Cup in India four years ago before losing to Australia.
SQUAD – Stafanie Taylor (captain), Merissa Aguilleira, Reniece Boyce, Shamilia Connell, Shanel Daley, Deandra Dottin, Afy Fletcher, Quiana Joseph, Kyshona Knight, Hayley Matthews, Anisa Mohammed, Chedean Nation, Akeira Peters, Shakera Selman, Felicia Walters.