Gayle, Russell, Pollard named in West Indies squad for T20I series vs South Africa, Australia and Pakistan

West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell returned to the Windies squad for the first time since March 2020 for the T20I series against South Africa, Australia and Pakistan at home. The Windies announced an 18-member squad for the three series.

Along with Russell, Shimron Hetmyer and Sheldon Cottrell made a comeback into the side, which will be led by Kieron Pollard following a 2-1 series win over Sri Lankan in March. Chris Gayle has also been named in the squad along with Evin Lewis while Nicholas Pooran has been named as vice-captain.

However, Sunil Narine continued to be left out of the side with Cricket West Indies revealing that Narine has informed the board about his unavailability for international cricket.

West Indies retained the core of the side that played Sri Lanka but made few changes in the bowling department. Oshane Thomas and Hayden Walsh Jr. also returned to the fold along with Cottrell while 39-year-old Fidel Edwards also retained his place.

“The provisional T20I squad was put together with all T20I home series matches against South Africa, Australia and Pakistan in mind. This gives us the opportunity to continue to build towards the upcoming World Cup and to determine our best squad and our ideal eleven,” lead selector Roger Harper said.

West Indies coach Phil Simmons also spoke about the importance of the 15 T20Is ahead of the two T20 World Cups scheduled to be played in 18 months’ time.

“These upcoming T20Is are crucial in terms of our preparation for the ICC T20 World Cup. We have assembled a very solid squad with experienced world-class match-winners and some exciting young talented players, ready to explode onto the global stage and do great things for West Indies cricket,” Simmons said.

West Indies will play five T20Is against South Africa from June 26 to July 3 in Grenada followed by five T20 Is against Australia in St. Lucia. The last five T20Is are scheduled against Pakistan in Barbados and Guyana.

West Indies squad: Kieron Pollard (C), Nicholas Pooran (WK), Fabian Allen, Dwayne Bravo, Sheldon Cottrell, Fidel Edwards, Andre Fletcher, Chris Gayle, Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Holder, Akeal Hosein, Evin Lewis, Obed McCoy, Andre Russell, Lendl Simmons, Oshane Thomas, Hayden Walsh Jnr

*Quote taken from ESPNCricinfo

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