Brendan Nash’s career for West Indies appears to have reached a crossroad following his axing for the second Test against India, starting on Tuesday at Kensington Oval in Barbados.
The Australia-born left-hander, whose parents are Jamaican, had been pigeon-holed as a Test batsman over the last two years, but has been omitted from the 13-member squad, after a string of modest scores in recent Tests.
Kirk Edwards has taken his place in the squad, but he is unlikely to make his Test debut on home soil.
Instead Marlon Samuels, who was overlooked for the first Test in his backyard, is the front-runner to slot into the middle order, and try to fortify the home team’s batting.
The 33-year-old Nash came to the Caribbean three years ago, when his first-class career in Australia seemed to have run its course, successfully bidding for a place in the West Indies team, and making his Test debut in that same year in New Zealand.
He successfully assimilated into the team, and was chosen Test vice-captain last November, when Darren Sammy was elevated to the post of captain ahead of Chris Gayle – but fortune has not smiled on Nash in this West Indies home international season.
Unlike other nations, West Indies typically does not stage their first-class competition simultaneously with their international matches, so Nash has been short of match practice, and came into the Tests against India – and Pakistan before them – a little cold.
His scores have been 5, 3, 6, and 30 against the Pakistanis, and he made one and nine in the first Test, which the Indians won by 63 runs at Sabina Park.
With his non-selection, and no way to prove his form, it appeared Nash will have a lot of questions to ask of himself, and his future.
West Indies have also continued to ignore Gayle, although the West Indies Cricket Board wrote to him in recent days, making overtures once again for another face-to-face meeting.
The rest of the squad remained the same, with hosts hoping they can find the right balance in Bridgetown, and their batsmen prove to be much more reliable.
Darren Sammy (Capt.), Adrian Barath, Carlton Baugh Jr, Devendra Bishoo, Darren Bravo, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Fidel Edwards, Kirk Edwards, Ravi Rampaul, Kemar Roach, Marlon Samuels, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Lendl Simmons.