Andre Russell has been recalled to the Windies one-day international squad for the fourth and fifth ODIs of the ongoing series against England while Kemar Roach has been sidelined with a back injury.
Russell, the hard-hitting all-rounder, is likely to slot in the lower middle-order as the Windies and England clash in the 100th ODI between the sides on Wednesday, 27 February in Grenada, which will be the fourth of the series. The fifth and final game will be played on 2 March in St. Lucia.
The series is currently tied 1-1 and the teams will clash in Grenada on Monday, 25 February to wrestle the advantage to their side. England had won the first ODI in Barbados by six wickets while the Windies made a comeback to take the second ODI by 26 runs at the same venue.
Russell, 30, last played an ODI for the Windies in July 2018 against Bangladesh. Overall, he has 998 runs and 65 wickets from 52 ODIs and boasts of a batting strike rate of 130.45. He has five half-centuries in the format but is yet to make a century.
The all-rounder has had issues with his knee in the past and had earlier made clear that his knee isn’t capable to withstand the rigours of 50-over cricket. He turned out for the Windies in the 2011 and 2015 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup and the Windies may be looking at his participation in the upcoming 2019 edition as well.
While Russel’s return bolsters the Windies line-up, the hosts have been dealt a blow as Roach has been withdrawn from the series due to a back injury. Roach, who did not play in the first two matches, will stay in Barbados and continue his rehabilitation.
“Kemar Roach had to be withdrawn from the ODI series due to injury and will be replaced in the squad by the experienced Andre Russell for the last two matches. We believe Russell will add value to the squad,” said Courtney Browne, the chairman of Cricket West Indies selection panel.
“We are well aware that although Andre’s bowling may be limited due to a knee problem, his tremendous batting ability to power the ball in the back end of the game will be an asset to the team.”
Windies squad for last two ODIs: Jason Holder (c), Shai Hope, Chris Gayle, John Campbell, Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer, Carlos Brathwaite, Ashley Nurse, Devendra Bishoo, Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas, Nicholas Pooran, Fabian Allen, Andre Russell