Former captain Stafanie Taylor of Jamaica has been named in the West Indies squad for this month’s ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, subject to a final fitness test.
The experienced all-rounder, who led West Indies to the title in 2016, has been battling a back issue ahead of the start of the T20 World Cup in South Africa on February 10, but selectors are hopeful the 31-year-old will be fit to participate in the event.
The Jamaican last international appearance was an ODI against New Zealand in September when she scored an unbeaten half-century but retired hurt after a Player-of-the-Match performance, and she has not played a T20I since July 2021.
Taylor was one of 15 players named in the squad by the West Indies on Wednesday, with fellow all-rounder Hayley Matthews leading the Caribbean side with help from vice-captain Shemaine Campbelle.
Matthews, Campbelle and Taylor are among six players in the squad who lifted the trophy seven years ago. The other players are Shamilia Connell, Shakera Selman, and Afy Fletcher.
The squad sees the inclusion of three players from the side that contested the inaugural Under-19 Women’s T20 World Cup, also in South Africa, and won by India on Sunday.
The young players are all-rounders Djenaba Joseph, who featured in the recent home series against England, and Zaida James as well as Trishan Holder who represented Barbados at last year’s Commonwealth Games.
All three played in West Indies’ eight-wicket defeat to India in their final match of the tri-series in South Africa on Sunday after being called in as cover for those senior players undergoing injury rehabilitation.
Lead selector Ann Browne-John is confident the trio can make valuable contributions.
“The selectors have opted for a blend of youth and experience for the upcoming T20 World Cup,” she said.
“Zaida brings both left-hand batting and left-arm orthodox bowling, both of which the team has been missing in recent time. Djenaba is a batting allrounder and Trishan a powerful striker and wicketkeeping option. They have all proven that they can hold their own at this level. We believe the 15 players consist of a good all-round mix and we expect them to be able to compete in this World Cup.”
Drawn in Group 2 alongside England, India, Pakistan, and Ireland, West Indies will open their World Cup campaign against England at Paarl’s Boland Park on February 11.
West Indies T20 World Cup Match Schedule
Monday, 11 February: West Indies vs England, Boland Park, Paarl, 3pm (9am Eastern Caribbean/8am Jamaica)
Wednesday, 15 February: West Indies vs India, Newlands, Cape Town, 3pm (9am Eastern Caribbean/8am Jamaica)
Friday, 17 February: West Indies vs Ireland, Newlands, Cape Town,7pm (1pm Eastern Caribbean/12noon Jamaica)
Sunday, 19 February: West Indies vs Pakistan, Boland Park, Paarl, 3pm (9am Eastern Caribbean/8am Jamaica)
West Indies squad: Hayley Matthews (capt), Shemaine Campbelle, Aaliyah Alleyne, Shamilia Connell, Afy Fletcher, Shabika Gajnabi, Chinelle Henry, Trishan Holder, Zaida James, Djenaba Joseph, Chedean Nation, Karishma Ramharack, Shakera Selman, Stafanie Taylor, Rashada Williams.