RCI St. Lucia
posted on April 20, 2015 11:39
West Indies opener Devon Smith is excited and focused as he prepares for the second Test match against England at the Grenada National Stadium. The 33-year-old left-hander is set to become the first Grenadian to play a Test match on home soil when the game bowls off on Tuesday.
Smith played well in the first Test – with a defiant 65 off 175 balls in over three hours — in the second innings as West Indies showed resilience to earn a draw at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground in Antigua.
The most notable innings of that match was turned in by ODI captain Jason Holder, who scored his maiden Test century.
Left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn has been dropped from the West Indies squad for the second Test against England in Grenada beginning on April 21. Right-arm medium pacer Shannon Gabriel has been called up in the only change to the West Indies 14-man squad.
Benn struggled in the drawn first Test at Antigua, going wicketless in the first innings before taking two in the second to end with match figures of 2 for 200 in 52 overs. His axing means Devendra Bishoo is the lone specialist slow bowler in the squad and could open the door for the legspinner to play his first Test since April 2012, against Australia in Barbados. Bishoo had an outstanding domestic first-class season for champions Guyana, finishing second with 61 wickets in 10 matches, only behind team-mate Veerasammy Permaul.
Gabriel, 26, played in the second and third Tests against South Africa prior to the World Cup, taking 2 for 80 in Port Elizabeth and match figures of 1 for 91 in Cape Town. He had modest returns in the last four matches of the West Indies first-class competition in the new year with a best innings haul of 3 for 40 against Barbados. In his last match against Leeward Islands, he had returns of 1 for 66 and 1 for 29 spread across 22 overs in both innings.