Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
West Indies spinner Sunil Narine has decided to represent the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League (IPL) final on June 1, which means that he will not be a part of the national team for the first Test against New Zealand in Jamaica.
The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) told Narine to make a decision by June 1 in order to give them enough time to fly him out to join the national team for their training camp ahead of the first Test, which gets underway on June 8.
WICB director of cricket Richard Pybus explained that the new “West Indies First” policy requires players to make themselves available for the training camps ahead of matches.
“The onus of the WICB is to protect the integrity of international cricket at all times,” Pybus said. “International cricket, and specifically Test cricket, is priority and requires dedicated preparation which is integral to team success.
“The WICB policy requires players to commit to sufficient preparation leading in to a series as part of a culture of excellence.”
Narine’s decision to play in the IPL final is a major blow for the West Indies as he took 18 of his 21 Test wickets against New Zealand in a two-Test series in the Caribbean in 2012.