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November 1, 2008
West Indies have named four uncapped players, including the Australian-born Brendan Nash, for their Test tour of New Zealand in December. The fast bowlers Kemar Roach, from Barbados, and Lionel Baker, from Leeward Islands, are also in the squad along with the Guyana batsman Leon Johnson.
The four men are also in a 15-man group named for the three-match one-day series against Pakistan in Abu Dhabi starting on November 12. The ODI squad also includes the spinners Nikita Miller and Dave Mohammed and the batsman Shawn Findlay, who have not been selected for the New Zealand Tests.
The Test squad instead will feature the left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn, the fast bowler Fidel Edwards and an extra wicketkeeper, Denesh Ramdin. Carlton Baugh is the lone specialist gloveman for the Abu Dhabi leg although he will likely be Ramdin's deputy in the longer format.
The inclusion of the former Queensland batsman Nash, who last year moved to Jamaica where his parents were originally from, continues his rise following his ODI debut in Canada in August. Johnson and Roach also made their initial one-day appearances in Canada and the three men, along with the untried Baker, will now be aiming to squeeze into the Test line-up.
John Dyson, the West Indies coach, said his team hoped to use the series against Pakistan as a chance to build on their tournament victory in Canada. "Chris Gayle batted strongly in that series as did Xavier Marshall, at his new No. 4 spot," Dyson said.
"Newcomers Brendan Nash, Leon Johnson and Shawn Findlay showed that they are ready to perform against Pakistan. The series is a further opportunity for our spinners, Nikita Miller and Dave Mohammed, to impress and provide the variety we need to balance the established pace attack. Kemar Roach is expected to press the senior bowlers for a spot in the team."
On the New Zealand leg, Dyson hoped that a series win would nudge his team above New Zealand, who at No. 7 are just one place ahead of them in the Test rankings. New Zealand were pushed hard during the tour of Bangladesh, beginning the tour with an ODI defeat and winning the Test series 1-0 with much difficultly. Dyson banked on his fast men to utilise the conditions well in the country.
"We have a strong pace attack in Jerome Taylor, Daren Powell and Fidel Edwards supported by the promising newcomers Roach and Lionel Baker," Dyson said. "Nash will be a handful on the New Zealand wickets and Sulieman Benn should find the wickets more to his liking compared with the flat wickets he has bowled on in the Caribbean."
The first Test in Dunedin starts on December 11 and the second, in Napier, begins on the 19th. The squad for the five-match ODI series and the two Twenty20 internationals in New Zealand will be named later.
Squad for Abu Dhabi ODIs Chris Gayle (capt), Ramnaresh Sarwan, Lionel Baker, Carlton Baugh (wk), Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Sewnarine Chattergoon, Shawn Findlay, Leon Johnson, Xavier Marshall, Nikita Miller, Dave Mohammed, Brendan Nash, Daren Powell, Kemar Roach, Jerome Taylor.
Squad for New Zealand Tests Chris Gayle (capt), Ramnaresh Sarwan, Lionel Baker, Carlton Baugh, Sulieman Benn, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Sewnarine Chattergoon, Fidel Edwards, Leon Johnson, Xavier Marshall, Brendan Nash, Daren Powell, Denesh Ramdin (wk), Kemar Roach, Jerome Taylor.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.