After a satisfactory debut, West Indies’ paceman Shannon Gabriel fell prey to a back injury, making way for Tino Best who has been summoned to fill in for the injured Gabriel. Despite a good couple of domestic season in the West Indies, Best was anything but expecting a recall into the national side. After all, it has been three years since Best wore a West Indian cap at the international level.
The 30 year old Barbados pace man was recently selected in the squad for the series against Australia, but didn’t make it to the playing eleven for any of the matches. Best is also named in the West Indies A squad that is scheduled to play India A next month.
Likely to play for in the Trent Bridge test on that starts on Friday, Best said, “I'm very happy to be recalled for the Test squad for the series in England. I’ve been waiting for my opportunity to represent the West Indies again and this is another opportunity to wear the ‘Baggy Maroon’ (cap.)”.
Best played at the international level in England, back in 2004 and also played for Yorkshire last season. Speaking about the fact that he is no stranger to English conditions, Best said, “What I have to do, and what I am fully aware of, is how to put that knowledge to work.”
According to a statement issued by the West Indies Cricket Board, Best spoke about his fitness and explained, “I'm fit and feeling quite ready. I've been training and working hard, looking forward to this. I was in the team earlier this year when we played against Australia and I gained a lot of knowledge from being in the group. I felt I fitted in quite well and I have a good idea of the work ethic and what will be required of me.”
Despite being fit and raring to go, it may not be an easy selection for Best. The Windies’ current pace ace Ravi Rampaul seems to be fit again and might be preferred ahead of Best. That apart, the West Indies might even choose to go for some variety and pick spinner Shane Shillingford, who had picked up 10 wickets in his previous test appearances against the Aussies.
Coming back to Best, who last played a test match back in 2009 against Bangladesh, he signed off saying, “I'm a hard worker and I'm really delighted to get this opportunity.”