Nicholas Pooran has been given the opportunity to stake his claim over future involvement in the West Indies Trials squad, having been named to the 14 man ‘A’ squad to play a pair of first-class matches in New Zealand next month.
Pooran, 25, has confirmed his position as one of the world’s most attractive young limited hitters in the last two years, kicking off his ODI career and continuing to impress on the global T20 circuit.
That form has led to some of the leading voices in West Indies cricket – notably Michael HoldingThe commentator and former fast bowler – suggested he should be considered for Tes selection, although his first class experience extended to three games for Trinidad and Tobago in 2014.
But Pooran will have the chance to face the red ball for the first time since then in December, having been named in West Indies A squad to play two matches against New Zealand A. The squad consists of eight members of the team who currently play the T20I draw in the country. and six reserves from the Test party. There are two four-day matches scheduled, which will kick off on December 3 at Mount Maunganui and December 11 in Nelson.
“This series will give our players the opportunity to play first class cricket against foreign opposition as well as experience different conditions here in New Zealand,” said Roger Harper, West Indies Cricket top selector. “It will also help to keep them in the frame if a replacement is needed for the Examiners, as we will have players who have played red ball cricket and are in shape to consider.”
While it is highly unlikely that Pooran will play any part in the Test series against New Zealand even if he scores a lot of goals – A-team fixtures run parallel to Tes – he is worthy of consideration for the planned draw in Bangladesh in January, where his abilities are against rounds can come to the fore.
Pooran will join the Melbourne Stars for six matches in the BBL season following the match, with the New Zealand-Australia travel corridor meaning that he won’t need to go into quarantine upon arrival in Australia.
West Indies vs New Zealand A: Fabian Allen, Nkrumah Bonner, Joshua Da Silva (wk), Brandon King, Kyle Mayers, Preston McSween, Shayne Moseley, Nicholas Pooran, Rovman Powell, Raymon Reifer, Jayden Seales, Romario Shepherd, Oshane Thomas, Hayden Walsh
Equipment: December 3-6, Mount Maunganui, December 11-14, Nelson
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