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West Indies have added fit-again Kemar Roach to their squad for the first Test against Bangladesh, which gets underway on June 16, in Antigua. Cricket West Indies (CWI) confirmed that the fast bowler, who had suffered a hamstring injury while representing Surrey in the County Championship in April, has recovered in time and passed a fitness test. He will be added as the 13th player in the team at the start of the Test series.
Roach will lead the West Indies pace attack, which also has Alzarri Joseph, Jayden Seales, Raymon Reifer and newcomer Anderson Phillip. He was part of West Indies' last Test series against England in March at home, which the hosts won 1-0. He finished the series as his side's joint-highest wicket-taker along with Seales, taking 11 wickets in three matches. In Tests overall, he has picked 242 wickets from 71 Test matches, averaging 27.18. He represented Surrey at the County Championship, where he picked a total of four wickets across two matches before suffering the injury.
The experienced Roach is also West Indies' highest-ranked bowler in Tests in 12th position and stands seventh on West Indies' all-time wicket-takers list.
"It's brilliant that he's fit for the Test match," West Indies head coach Phil Simmons said. "He's always an inspiration for the younger players we have here and he's ready to go.
"With 250 wickets around the corner, we're happy with what he brings to the table, not just on the field but in the dressing room as well. I'm glad he's fit and looking forward to seeing him getting out there and doing what he does so well."
Roach holds a good record against Bangladesh, as well as at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, in North Sound, Antigua, where the first Test will be played. His career-best returns of 6 for 48 came against Bangladesh back in 2009, while he also picked 5 for 8 against Bangladesh in 2018 skittling them out for 43. He is the highest wicket-taker at the stadium in North Sound, with 43 wickets in eight Tests.