West Indies women have called up the uncapped 20-year old Sheneta Grimmond from Guyana for their title defence at the Women's World T20 that begins at home in November. However, they retained the bulk of the squad that lifted the trophy in 2016, naming 11 of them in a 15-member squad announced on Wednesday. Jamaica batsman Chinelle Henry, wicketkeeper Natasha McLean, and allrounder Chedean Nation were the other additions.
Henry is unseasoned at the international level, having turned out in just two ODIs and seven T20Is so far. She last played for West Indies over three years ago, in a T20I against Sri Lanka in Colombo. McLean and Nation have more experience on their side and were both part of the recently concluded T20I series against South Africa. Nation, at the time of the last World T20, was in the middle of a seven-year absence from international cricket that ended when she was recalled to the limited-overs squad later that year.
West Indies most recently drew a three-match ODI series and five-match T20I series against South Africa. They will next head into their fourth and final training camp of the year, starting October 15 in Antigua.
"The women have one final training camp before the warm-up matches and we are focusing our plans on ensuring that they are ready to peak when the tournament starts in November," head coach Henderson Springer said. "We want to create an environment that enables the players to continue their hard work on improving their skills and fitness, whilst providing real focus on the key roles of each player for us to be successful. We are aiming for consistency, and we think with the work we have put in, the ladies will peak at the right time."
The team will once again be led by Stafanie Taylor, whose half-century in the 2016 final set up the victory. "Captaining the West Indies in the ICC Women's World T20 2018 is both a huge honour and a massive challenge. It will obviously be a great feeling to lead the team at home, but one has to also live up to expectations of being defending champions," Taylor said.
"We have a great squad with several potential match winners, but we will have to be at our best in each and every match if we want to lift the trophy again.
"The announcement of the squad makes me realise that the tournament is almost upon us. The opposition squads are really impressive, and this promises to be a highly competitive tournament. I really hope that Windies fans can come out and support us as we strive to defend our title on home soil."
West Indies will start their campaign against Bangladesh on November 10. The other teams with them in Group A are England, Sri Lanka and South Africa.