West Indies selectors have named uncapped 19-year-old pacer Jayden Seales in the 13-man squad to face South Africa in the first Test starting in St Lucia on Thursday.
The panel also recalled Shai Hope, the top-order batsman, and Kieran Powell, the experienced left-handed opener. Hope last played Test cricket in England in July last year, while Powell’s last Test appearance was in Bangladesh in December, 2018.
Speaking on the squad selection, Roger Harper, the Lead Selector said: “Jayden Seales is young, very enthusiastic and has a big heart. In the ‘Best v Best’ matches he bowled with pace, got movement and has displayed the ability to take wickets. We think he is capable of adding potency to the bowling attack.
“Kieran Powell we know is a very capable batsman who we expect to add quality and depth to the batting department. He put himself in the mix with his performance in the Best v Best match. Shai Hope has performed very well in the red ball matches he has played, following on the back of his highly successful One-Day International series against Sri Lanka, so he has forced his way into the squad by performance.”
Harper added: “The aim is to continue to build on the performances of the last two Test series and to keep improving as a Test team. We must continue the process of working hard, playing with great passion, playing with determination and a great desire to succeed. Doing that consistently will bring us the right results. The training camp gave the players the opportunity to prepare for the Betway Test series in all departments, considering that no real red ball cricket has been played since the series against Sri Lanka in March.”
Speedster Shannon Gabriel was not considered due to injury.
SQUAD – Kraigg Brathwaite (captain), Jermaine Blackwood (vice-captain), Nkrumah Bonner, Roston Chase, Rahkeem Cornwall, Joshua Da Silva, Jason Holder, Shai Hope, Alzarri Joseph, Kyle Mayers, Kieran Powell, Kemar Roach, Jayden Seales.