By Neto Baptiste
Legendary West Indies batsman and former captain Sir Viv Richards said he “felt sad” after learning that all-rounder Jason Holder had been left out of the 15-member T20 World Cup squad.
Holder was however part of the reserves alongside Darren Bravo, Sheldon Cottrell, Jason Holder and Akeal Hosein.
According to Sir Viv, despite what many may think of Holder’s captaincy in the past, there is no denying he is one of the best players currently available in the region.
“I felt maybe it could have been a misprint and then hearing the news as well you think you were not hearing right at that particular time. We may have our issues with Jason when he was in charge as captain of the team, but we can never doubt the individual’s ability and his talent and I just felt sad that someone with such ability couldn’t make a West Indies T20, so that suggests to me that we must be seriously blessed with talented individuals the caliber of Jason Holder,” he said.
In 10 matches and three series against Pakistan, South Africa, and Sri Lanka, Holder totalled 90 runs, had an average of 30, and claimed nine wickets. He, however, struggled in the team’s most recent series against Pakistan and amassed just two runs and 4wickets in four matches.
Despite the ongoing discussions over the make-up of the squad, Sir Viv said fans should rally behind the team.
“At the end of the day, regardless of who goes out … every time whether we go out with an old man and a dog, I still believe that things can be accomplished and that’s the way we should feel. There are lots of talk about this and about that but as I said earlier, the jury is certainly out at present across the region and being in deliberation we will have a fair idea when the tournament is over there are going to be talks for sure I know and I guess that will be pretty hot but at the moment, we should get behind the team. It’s a West Indies team and every time we go out onto the field, as supporters, we should get behind them,” he said.
West Indies are the defending World T20 champions after having won in tittles in 2012 and 2016.
Full Squad: Kieron Pollard (Captain), Nicholas Pooran, Fabian Allen, Dwayne Bravo, Roston Chase, Andre Fletcher, Chris Gayle, Shimron Hetmyer, Evin Lewis, Obed McCoy, Lendl Simmons, Ravi Rampaul, Andre Russell, Oshane Thomas, Hayden Walsh Jr. Reserves: Darren Bravo, Sheldon Cottrell, Jason Holder, Akeal Hosein.