ST JOHN’S (Reuters) - West Indies have called up uncapped spin-bowling all-rounder Rahkeem Cornwall for the two tests against India later this month but paceman Alzarri Joseph will miss the series with injury.
Cornwall’s impressive record for Leeward Islands Hurricanes and the West Indies ‘A’ team earned him his maiden call-up with Robert Haynes, head of interim selection panel, saying they had high hopes from the 26-year-old.
“Rahkeem has been performing consistently over a long period of time and has proven to be a match-winner, so we believe his elevation to the test squad is merited at this time,” Haynes said in a statement.
“We believe he can provide an attacking option to our bowling attack with his sharp turn and extra bounce,” he said of the off-spinner, who has taken 260 wickets from 55 first-class matches.
“He can also lend a bit of depth to the batting, so we are looking forward to him coming into the squad and making a valuable contribution.”
Joseph was allowed to recover from an arm injury sustained during the Indian Premier League earlier this year.
“Alzarri is undergoing remedial work and we are monitoring his recovery, but we do not think he is ready yet to last five days of a gruelling test match,” Haynes said.
“He represents a key part of West Indies future and we do not want to rush him back. We have two important series coming up later in the year in India and we want to be very careful how his recovery is managed.”
Along with Cornwall, regular West Indies ‘A’ captain Shamarh Brooks is the only other uncapped player in the 13-member squad.
The Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground in Cornwall’s native Antigua hosts the first test from Aug. 22 while the second test is scheduled at Jamaica’s Sabina Park from Aug. 30.
West Indies squad: Jason Holder (captain), Kraigg Brathwaite, Darren Bravo, Shamarh Brooks, John Campbell,
Roston Chase, Rahkeem Cornwall, Shane Dowrich, Shannon Gabriel, Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope, Keemo Paul, Kemar Roach.
Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; editing by Nick Mulvenney