Nash nears West Indies debut
Five of Brendan Nash's family will be in Dunedin this week hoping they will be watching the West Indies batsman appear in his maiden Test for his adopted team. Nash was born in Western Australia, grew up in Queensland and played for the state before leaving for the Caribbean in 2007.
With parents from Jamaica, Nash, who appeared in 36 first-class games for Queensland, quickly qualified for the national team. He played five one-day internationals in Canada and Abu Dhabi this year before being picked for the Test tour.
"It's exciting," Nash told the Courier-Mail. "My mother, father, sister, aunty and uncle are coming to the Test. They love to watch the West Indies. They always have.
"My parents were very strong with their Jamaican culture and I wanted to experience that. If it works out, I will feel good for the selectors who showed faith in me. Because of my light colour and background, they copped a lot of criticism when I was first chosen."
Nash, who is newly married, has enjoyed his change of hemispheres and has no plans to switch back to the Australian way. "I have really enjoyed it from a life experience point of view as well as cricket," he said. "I have found the Jamaican people very warm and friendly. I said when I left that I saw it as a long-term move and nothing has changed."
While Nash is aiming to begin his Test career, the fast bowler Fidel Edwards is approaching 100 wickets and will start the game on 95. "I'm right up there and will be looking to get the other five, move to 100 and go on from there," he said. "It is something I have been thinking about. We have not played Test cricket since June [against Australia], so I have had to wait."
Edwards planned to "make the batsmen uncomfortable" and he was pleased with his form after recovering from a back injury that ruled him out of the Stanford Series. "My rhythm has been very good and the aim is to get wickets and make a contribution to the team," he said. "I have been trying to stay fit and stay focused on my job."
The weather in Dunedin has been damp and the fast bowlers may benefit from some life in a surface that has usually suited the spinners. "I will be looking to get the ball to swing and reap the rewards," he said. "If the conditions stay this way the ball should do quite a bit. We are here to win the series, we know the Kiwis can be a tough team, but we believe we can win."