Charles replaces Motie for World Cup qualifiers

June 09, 2023
Johnson Charles
Johnson Charles

ST JOHN'S, Antigua (CMC):

Johnson Charles will replace Gudakesh Motie in the West Indies 15-member squad for the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup qualifier, starting on Sunday, June 18, in Zimbabwe.

According to a Cricket West Indies news release, left-arm spinner Motie has not recovered from a back injury that forced him to miss the final two matches of the West Indies 'A' Team tour of Bangladesh that ended recently.

Charles, 34, returned to the ODI squad during the ongoing one-day international series against the United Arab Emirates in Sharjah, replacing suspended fellow batsman Devon Thomas, who was charged under the ICC Anti-Corruption Code, including "contriving to fix" matches.

St Lucian Charles scored 63 in the second ODI against the Emiratis in his 50th ODI appearance and was named Player of the Match.

"We want to wish Motie all the best as he continues his rehabilitation," West Indies lead selector Desmond Haynes said. "He is one of the players we expect to feature in West Indies cricket, so we want to see him recover fully so he can participate when called upon.

"When we discussed the replacement player, we looked at the possibility of another spinner in the squad. However, we felt it was better to go with Charles.

"He is experienced at the international level, he will add value to the team for an important tournament. He also has knowledge of the Zimbabwe conditions, having played ODI matches there before, so we see him as the right man for the job at this stage."

West Indies arrive on Saturday in the Zimbabwe capital of Harare from Sharjah, and they will prepare for the 10-team tournament, where they have been drawn in Group A alongside hosts Zimbabwe, Nepal, Netherlands and the United States.

The Shai Hope-captained West Indies face the United States of America (USA) in the opening match on Sunday, June 18, at Takashinga Cricket Club, then Nepal on Thursday, June 22, at the Harare Sports Club, where they also face the Zimbabweans on Saturday, June 24, and the Netherlands on Monday, June 26.

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