Windies pace attack fully fit for Lord's
LONDON, England – West Indies look set to have a fully fit seam attack for the opening Test at Lord’s starting here Thursday.
There were worries over the trio of Kemar Roach, Fidel Edwards and Ravi Rampaul coming out of the four-day tour match against England Lions last week but head coach Ottis Gibson said the players had acquitted themselves well in training.
“Everybody pulled up okay today. It all goes back to managing niggles with the Lord’s Test on Thursday being the big event in mind,” Gibson said Wednesday.
“Kemar twisted his ankle at Northants – he’s been treated twice a day for the last couple of days. He had a little bowl today, about six overs, pretty controlled … no complaints, so at this stage he’s doing okay.
“Ravi was just a stiff neck from sleeping badly or just staying up too late watching TV or playing Playstation,” Gibson joked. “He’s fine and Fidel is fine also. Everything looks all set for Thursday.”
All three bowlers were used sparingly on the final day of the Lions tour match, raising question marks over the players’ fitness.
Edwards, who sat out the tour opener against Sussex with injury, sent down just six overs while Rampaul bowled four and Roach, none.
In their absence, the Lions cantered to an easy 10-wicket win before tea at Wantage Road.
Captain Darren Sammy is yet to play a game on tour but Gibson said the medium pacer had been putting in plenty of work in the nets in order to be match ready for the Test series.
“The captain bowled a lot of balls in the last series as did Kemar. A decision was made to give him (Sammy) a break,” Gibson explained.
“We wanted to have a look at the three seamers bowling together in a game so the captain’s been doing his work off the field. He bowled a lot at Northants last week so we’re pretty clear what we’re going to get from him so he’s not a real concern.”
With the pacemen now all fit, West Indies could now field a four-prong seam attack at Lord’s but Gibson remained coy on that decision.
“We haven’t been able to see the pitch yet so we haven’t decided what the XI is going to be but based on conditions early season in England, it’s possible [to play four seamers],” the Barbadian said.
“That’s as much as I can give you without telling you the team.”