West Indies Women have been dealt a heavy blow ahead of their T20 International series against South Africa Women, with marquee player and captain Stafanie Taylor ruled out of all three matches.
The 30-year-old has been forced to serve a period of isolation here after being named as a primary contact of a positive COVID-19 case in her native Jamaica, Cricket West Indies said in a release late Monday.
Her absence means vice-captain Anisa Mohammad will lead the 13-member squad in the series which gets underway at the Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium in North Sound in Antigua on Tuesday.
“It is unfortunate that Stafanie will not be available for this series but there are a number of experienced players who we would be looking to, to fill any void,” said lead women’s selector Ann Browne-John.
Taylor’s absence will also rob the side of their leading batsman, the right-hander having carried the burden of run-scoring in recent times for the Caribbean unit.
She was also in decent form for Southern Bravo in the inaugural Hundred tournament in England earlier this month, helping the franchise reach the final where they lost to Oval Invincibles.
An effective off-spinner, the Jamaican has also played a key role in the bowling attack in both versions of the game.
Taylor has scored 3121 runs from 111 T20 Internationals at an average of 36, and has taken 98 wickets at an average of 16 and economy rate of 5.66.
Browne-John said West Indies would be looking to players like all-rounder Qiana Joseph to fill the void.
“The young player Qiana Joseph brings another left-hand batter option as well as left arm orthodox bowling which has been lacking in the team,” Browne-John noted.
“This will be a good test coming out of the recent Pakistan series, since South Africa is one of the higher-ranked teams.”
The 20-year-old Joseph played two One-Day Internationals four years ago but is yet to make her T20 International debut.