Wal­lace urges West Indies to play un­capped Holder

The Star (Jamaica) - - Front Page -

For­mer Test opener Philo Wal­lace has urged West Indies tour se­lec­tors to hand Che­mar Holder his de­but in the first Test against Eng­land next month, con­tend­ing that the un­capped speed­ster can shock Eng­land and lay the foun­da­tion for a series win.

The 49-year-old, who played seven Tests and 33 One-Day In­ter­na­tion­als, ar­gued Holder should be made part of a four­pronged pace at­tack in­clud­ing cap­tain Ja­son Holder, Ke­mar Roach and Alzarri Joseph, point­ing out he was “sharp and ready”.

“I think the ex­cit­ing thing about this squad is we have fast bowlers. We have fast bowlers – I’m not putting any­thing else – and to hear the bowl­ing coach (Roddy Est­wick) when he speaks about the ex­cite­ment of th­ese fast bowlers is won­der­ful,” Wal­lace said.

“My ex­cite­ment is go­ing to be Che­mar Holder and I hope they don’t keep him in cot­ton wool. I hope that he starts be­cause he and Alzarri Joseph are the fu­ture of our bowl­ing and we need to get them in as quickly as pos­si­ble.

“They won an Un­der-19 World Cup to­gether [in 2016] – Che­mar went up as a re­place­ment and ev­ery­body wanted to know why he wasn’t there from the be­gin­ning. He went up in the end and showed his class.

Che­mar Holder proved out­stand­ing in the re­cent first-class cham­pi­onship, snatch­ing 36 wick­ets at just un­der 19 runs apiece for cham­pi­ons Bar­ba­dos Pride, to emerge as the lead­ing fast bowler in the tour­na­ment.

The 22-year-old bowled with pace and ag­gres­sion in tan­dem with the likes of Test seamer Ke­mar Roach, and his per­for­mances saw him force his way into the 14-man squad for the three-Test series which bowls off in Southamp­ton on July 8.

Wal­lace said along with the four quicks he would also in­clude off-spin­ning all-rounders Ros­ton Chase and Rah­keem Corn­wall in the fi­nal XI for the open­ing Test – a move de­signed to also boost the Windies’ bat­ting.

“You’re look­ing at five bats­men but when you look at those six bowlers, four out of those six bowlers can bat so you’re ac­tu­ally play­ing nine or 10 bats­men,” Wal­lace pointed out.

“It’s time Corn­wall recog­nises his abil­ity as a bats­man. I know he’s only played a few Test matches but we have to give him the con­fi­dence that he can go out there and bat.”

– CMC

PHOTO COUR­TESY OF ICC

Che­mar Holder (right) cel­e­brates tak­ing a wicket dur­ing the ICC Un­der-19 World Cup fi­nal be­tween West Indies Un­der-19 and In­dia at Sher-e-Bangla Na­tional Cricket Sta­dium, Mir­pur, Dhaka, on Sun­day, Fe­bru­ary 14, 2016.

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