ST JOHN’S, Antigua, CMC – A plethora of Test hopefuls will have their chance to impress selectors when they line-up in two two-day matches for Cricket West Indies President’s XI against touring England starting next week.
The first match runs from January 15-16 and the second from January 17-18, with both fixtures carded for 3W’s Oval, UWI Cave Hill Campus.
Batsman Sunil Ambris is the only player in the current Test squad included in the 12-man unit being led by Jahmar Hamilton, and will be feeling the pressure of expectation after two underwhelming series.
He managed only 68 runs in two Tests against India last October and 73 runs in another two-Test rubber against Bangladesh a month later.
Ambris averages 15 from six Tests.
He is one six players in the squad with Test experience with the likes of batsmen Jermaine Blackwood and Vishaul Singh, all-rounder Raymon Reifer and fast bowlers Miguel Cummins and Alzarri Joseph all named.
Blackwood has not played a Test in 15 months but remains in the selection frame while Vishaul played the last of his three Tests nearly two years ago and has also remained on the lips of selectors with prolific scoring in the domestic first class competition last season.
All eyes will be on Alzarri Joseph who looked back to his old self in helping bowl Leeward Islands Hurricanes to an emphatic 245-run victory over Trinidad and Tobago Red Force on Monday.
The 22-year-old has struggled for full fitness after recovering from a back injury last year, but has impressed with his pace and sharpness in three matches for Hurricanes that have yielded 15 wickets this season.
Hamilton, meanwhile, has toured with the Windies of recent without breaking into the final XI and healthy scores against the England could put him in contention for a Test debut.
SQUAD – Jahmar Hamilton (captain), Sunil Ambris, Jermaine Blackwood, John Campbell, Bryan Charles, Miguel Cummins, Chandrapaul Hemraj, Chemar Holder, Alzarri Joseph, Raymon Reifer, Vishaul Singh, Devon Thomas.