ST JOHN’S, Antigua, CMC – Selectors on Tuesday named a predictable 14-member squad for the limited overs tour of New Zealand, as they continued to prepare the unit for the defence of their Twenty20 World Cup title next November.
The side will be led, as expected, by Stafanie Taylor and includes veteran off-spinner Anisa Mohammed, trusted all-rounder Deandra Dottin and dependable opener Hayley Matthews.
Chief selector Courtney Browne said it was important the Caribbean side built on the successes achieved last year when they hosted Sri Lanka.
“This series is very important one for our team. We played well at home against Sri Lanka last year and we want to continue that momentum,” Browne said.
“We will be hosting the ICC Women’s World T20 event later this year and as defending champions we will want to put on a good show in front of home supporters and win again.
“This tour will help us assess where we are and tighten up on those areas that need close attention.” West Indies swept the series against Sri Lanka last October, winning the one-day phase in Trinidad 3-0 and also taking the subsequent Twenty20 series in Antigua by an identical margin.
However, they may find themselves with a slightly more difficult prospect against New Zealand, especially in foreign conditions.
On their last tour there four years ago, the Windies suffered a 3-0 whitewash in the one-day series and were beaten 4-0 in the T20 series – with the other game washed out.
Later that year, West Indies exacted revenge when they swept the White Ferns 4-0 in the ODI series in the Caribbean, while losing the three-match T20 rubber. The Windies will have to do without speedster Shakera Selman, however, who has had to be withdrawn from the squad because of injury.
Selman was limited to just one match in last year’s 50-overs World Cup in England because of injury but recovered to face Sri Lanka A.
She has been replaced by fellow seamer Tremayne Smartt, who has not played an international in 16 months.
“The original squad included Shakera Selman, one of our most experienced bowlers, but she is unable to make the trip due to injury and has been replaced by Tremayne Smartt,” Browne said.
“We wish a Shakera a speedy recovery and hope to see her back on the field soon. We welcome back Tremayne into the squad and know she is capable of delivering on the international stage.”
West Indies will play three one-days and five T20s in a series running from March 4-25.
SQUAD – Stafanie Taylor (captain), Anisa Mohammed (vice-captain), Merissa Aguilleira, Britney Cooper, Reniece Boyce, Shamilia Connell, Deandra Dottin, Afy Fletcher, Kycia Knight, Kyshona Knight, Hayley Matthews, Chedean Nation, Akeira Peters, Tremayne Smart.