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|Amid West Indies’ ongoing situation, coach Phil Simmons has made a strong statement on the unavailability of players like Andre Russell and Sunil Narine, saying, ‘we can’t beg people to play for West Indies’ and a furious Russell has lashed out the coach with a social-media comment.
Windies coach Phil Simmons; Andre Russell
Seven of West Indies’ mainstay players in the white-ball format has been unavailable for selector for the team which stands in a crisis situation with the 2022 T20 World Cup just two months away. They had lost 1-4 loss to India earlier this month at home in the T20I series and presently are 0-1 behind in the contest against New Zealand. Amid the situation, West Indies coach Phil Simmons has made a strong statement on the unavailability of players like Andre Russell and Sunil Narine, saying, ‘we can’t beg people to play for West Indies’ and a furious Russell has lashed out the coach with a social-media comment.
Russell last played for West Indies in the 2021 T20 World Cup. Since then, he played the Indian Premier League 2022 and is presently part of the Hundred, along with Narine, and is on the list of overseas players for the impending UAE’s International League T20. Following IPL 2022, he missed both the India and New Zealand series at home.
“From what I have gathered, I think he is unavailable because he hasn’t made himself available,” chief selector Desmond Haynes said of the Russell situation.
Simmons, however, made a stronger remark on the situation. “It hurts. There’s no other way to put it. But what can you do? I don’t think that I should be begging people to play for their countries. I think if you want to represent West Indies, you will make yourself available. Life has changed, in that people have the opportunities to go different places and if they choose that over West Indies, that’s just how it is,” he said.
Sharing Simmons’ quote on his Instagram handle, Russell captioned it, “I know this was coming but am gonna stay quiet!!!”
Haynes further hinted that the CPL tournament, slated to be played in September, could be considered for selection of players in West Indies’ T20 World Cup squad.
“If there is a competition that is run by the West Indies (and) somebody is playing well, I think his name should really come up for selection. That performance is very important to us, and we didn’t say that we have picked the World Cup team yet, so all the games that are going to be played leading up to the World Cup, we must take into consideration,” he said. (Hindustan Times)