West Indies news June 6, 2012

Gabriel unlikely to be fit for New Zealand series

ESPNcricinfo staff

Shannon Gabriel, the injured West Indies fast bowler, has said he is not likely to be fit in time for the home Test series against New Zealand, which begins on July 25. Gabriel is recovering from a stress reaction in his back, which he picked up during his debut Test against England in May.

"I've been [recuperating for] three weeks now, the pain is not there anymore," Gabriel told the Trinidad Express. "So [it's about] getting more fit and stronger now, and [then it's] back to cricket.

"I don't think I'll be ready for the New Zealand series. [Closer] to the end of the year, there's a tour to Bangladesh ... hopefully I can be on that team." West Indies are scheduled to play Bangladesh in November.

Gabriel took 3 for 60 in the first innings at Lord's, dismissing Ian Bell, Matt Prior and Graeme Swann. In the second, he bowled only five overs, during which he removed Kevin Pietersen. Subsequent scans showed a stress reaction in the lower spine, ruling him out of the remainder of the tour.

Adjusting to the standards of Test cricket, Gabriel said, had been a challenge. "Over there [in England], it was international cricket," he said. "It was a big step away from regional cricket. You have to concentrate a little more on what you want to do and the actual planning. It's every cricketer's dream to play at Lord's and it just happened to be me. [Now I must] get back from injury and address the selectors once more."

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  • Carl on June 7, 2012, 9:39 GMT


    I am hearing you!

    I saw Patrick Patterson bowl at his peak, and he was, as Tony Cozier said "bowling as fast as a man can bowl". Guys like him, Mikey and co are what got me into this beautiful game. None quicker, none more fearsome, and none more exciting to watch. World Cricket NEEDS genuine quicks coming out of the Caribbean. Without it, it is akin to football without Brazil's fluid skills.

  • Sony on June 7, 2012, 5:56 GMT

    Exited to see lots of talented guys coming up for WI. WI management will have to make some hard decisions going forward. First will be to exclude sammy from test team and have him play in odis and t20s alone. With all respect to his later performances, I believe he does not fit in the test side. His presence is always restricting them to just 3 quality bowlers.

  • PALLAB on June 7, 2012, 1:40 GMT

    @SNIFFLEATHER,Hamilton:Indian based in the US now. Almost every 2nd day, I still reminisce about Macko,Holding,Roberts,Garner and the craft, skills and talent that they brought as a fearsome foursome at that pace! And posted the max no. of comments when S. Rajesh posted that analytical piece of the Caribb pace bowling machines b/ w '75-9'5. As a youngster, I switched/w Macko and Hadlee's (my other fav) styles and could seriously bowl at 85 mph. But for circumstances could have played cricket seriously. One abiding dream is to become a billionaire (won't do a Sanford!) and help resurrect/regenerate ABSOLUTE pace (akin to the demon pace of Patterson and Holding in his prime) bowling stocks for WI (imp. of money/resources can't be denied). While Pakistan will always produce some raw, talented naturally quick pace bowlers, world cricket needs WI to produce a superb pace quartet again to stir Test cricket again.

  • Carl on June 6, 2012, 22:48 GMT


    One can only agree. Marshall was simply great. A genuine fast bowling legend. And sadly missed.

  • Dean on June 6, 2012, 21:03 GMT

    As an Englishman who has a Jamaican father & was brought up watching the great west indian team of the 80s I tend to follow WI cricket very closely. I was impressed with Gabriel on debut & hope he can develop in to a top class test match fast bowler. @sniffleather, I've heard a fair bit about Jason Holder & saw some footage of him play at the under 19 WC a couple of years ago where he looked a great prospect I don't know so much about Johnson is he genuinely fast ? In your opinion or anyone else's who has seen these guys bowl, are they ready for test cricket ? If so WI really do need to find space for an extra bowler and it could also end up being the end of the line for Fidel. The spin options look good too with Narine, Shillingford & i'm sure Bishoo will be back in contention soon aswell.

  • Dummy4 on June 6, 2012, 19:18 GMT

    Future questions to "Ask Steven" based on the upcoming Test series against New Zealand: "Which Test match was famously abandoned due to hurricane weather conditions?" or "Has there ever been a Test series that has lost more money than the New Zealand tour of the West Indies in 2012???"

  • anthony on June 6, 2012, 16:42 GMT

    @sniffleather my apologies i did misread your origional post....I often do wonder to myself if the modern day windies could have one bowler from the glory days of 1975-1994 in their present team who would it be and how much of a difference would it make......I would pick the Malcolm Marshall of the mid 80s and oh my goodness how much of a difference it would make. He would have demolished the tail against the aussies in teh recent series and the windies would have won that...equally the eng series would be 1-1 and going back to India he would have won 2 of those tests, thats how much of a killer malcom was, his speed and swing and skills and pride r sorely missed today

  • Carl on June 6, 2012, 16:09 GMT


    If you read my post carefully, you will realise that I did not (and would not!) attempt to compare Kemar Roach to the late, great Malcolm Marshall. I compared his use of the crease when bowling, as not many in the modern era do so. I agree with you regarding the weight issue, this is a matter that is often neglected with young pacers. For example, Andrew Flintoff was a fine bowler, but was never going to be able to carry the excess weight that he always had.

  • anthony on June 6, 2012, 11:21 GMT

    Gabriel perservered and did well but if he wants to play test cricket a long time he does need to lose some bulk. That kind of bulk is not suited to a long career in test cricket. Obviously with time and differing conditions he will pick up new skills. But determination and dedication are the key words. @sniffleather I dont think at this stage it is fair to compare kemar roach to marshall. I dont think roach has he speed or ferocity of a marshall. but if he can add some pace and control and skills it may come in time. Roach is a very promising windies bowler i just think we need to lay off the comparisons at this time.

  • Carl on June 6, 2012, 9:34 GMT

    Good luck Shannon. One hopes that you return to full fitness as soon as possible. A promising debut, from one of several young quicks that are vying for places in the national squad. When the squad for the first test against New Zealand is announced, we could well see the giant fast bowler Jason Holder included, or his West Indies 'A' colleague Delorn Johnson, the left arm quickie. Johnson may well be one of the best finds in recent years, as coupled with Roach's magnificent use of the crease, which at times is reminiscent of Malcolm Marshall, his left arm angle would provide a challenge to opponents. Holder is another very promising seamer. An accurate pacer who delivers from 6'7" will always be a threat. In a year or two, West Indies could well be able to field one of their best, and varied attacks for many years. A pool of Roach, Rampaul, Gabriel, Holder, Johnson, Taylor, Narine and Bishoo would give the selectors both variation and class.

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