ST JOHN’S, Antigua, CMC – Left-handed stroke-makers Evin Lewis and Shimron Hetymyer have been axed for this month’s One-Day International tour of Sri Lanka after failing Cricket West Indies’ new fitness standards.
In a media release on February 3, CWI said the pair did not “attain the new minimum standard fitness requirements in recent fitness assessments” and would not be part of the 15-man squad led by all-rounder Kieron Pollard.
“Evin Lewis and Shimron Hetmyer missed out due to the fact that they came up short in the fitness test,” chief selector Roger Harper explained.
“They will be missed. Lewis was the team’s best batsman in the recent Colonial Medical Insurance ODI Series against Ireland where he batted with great composure and proved the bedrock for the team’s series win.
“Hetmyer appeared to be getting his act together and was an integral part of the team’s batting group.”
The 28-year-old Lewis averages nearly 36 from 51 ODIs and has been one of the Windies’ most dependable batsmen in recent time. During the last eight months, he has averaged nearly 43 from 16 matches.
He plundered 208 runs at an average of 104 in three matches against Ireland last month to earn Man-of-the-Series honours.
Hetmyer, meanwhile, endured a poor series against Ireland with scores of six and eight in the doubleheader in Bridgetown before being axed for the final game in Grenada.
Only last December, his magnificent 139 against India in Chennai earned West Indies a comprehensive eight-wicket win in the opener of the three-match series.
Overall, he averages nearly 37 from 45 ODIs with five hundreds.
Meanwhile, experienced left-hander, Darren Bravo has been recalled to the side four months after being dropped for the tour of Afghanistan over his poor form.
Since then, the 30-year-old has rediscovered his touch with nearly 500 runs at an average of 96 during last November’s Super50 Cup, and has averaged 50 from four innings in the first-class championship so far this year.
All-rounder Rovman Powell, who averaged 58 with two exhilarating hundreds and fifties during the Super50, has also earned a recall following 14 months on the sidelines while left-arm spinning all-rounder, Fabian Allen, returns following injury.
“Darren Bravo and Rovman Powell owe their recall to their outstanding performance in the Colonial Medical Super50 tournament,” said Harper.
“Bravo brings good form, a renewed appetite for runs and lots of experience which will benefit the team tremendously. Powell who is back from injury will add batting firepower to the lineup, increase the team’s bowling options and strengthen the fielding unit.”
West Indies leave this week for the series which opens in Colombo on February 22 and continues with matches in Hambantota four days later, with the final match set for Kandy on March 1.
Following the series, the Caribbean side face Sri Lanka in two Twenty20 Internationals.
SQUAD – Kieron Pollard (captain), Shai Hope (vice-captain), Fabian Allen, Sunil Ambris, Darren Bravo, Roston Chase, Sheldon Cottrell, Jason Holder, Alzarri Joseph, Brandon King, Keemo Paul, Nicholas Pooran, Rovman Powell, Romario Shepherd, Hayden Walsh.