(Reuters) – Sunil Narine has still not given up hope of a return to international cricket after missing out on a spot in West Indies’ World Cup squad due to injury, the spinner has said.
The 30-year-old, who last played an one-day international in 2016, had come into consideration under the new selection policy of Cricket West Indies (CWI) but missed out due to a finger injury on his right hand.
“I would have loved to play in the World Cup,” Narine, who is currently playing for the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League, told ESPNcricinfo.
“I’ve missed international cricket and missed representing the West Indies. It’s where my heart lies. But I don’t feel my finger is quite ready for ODI cricket.
“I can get through a T20 where I bowl just four overs. But even that isn’t easy and I need help from the physio. It’s holding me back from playing international cricket. I wouldn’t be able to do myself or the team justice.”
New CWI president Ricky Skerritt had earlier this month announced a series of administrative changes including an overhaul of the selection panel, with Robert Haynes replacing Courtney Browne as interim head of selectors.
As part of the old selection policy, availability for domestic tournaments was a requirement to be picked for West Indies squads, but Skerritt said selectors would be allowed to pick all players who make themselves available.
“I’m really happy the selectors considered me. It shows they have faith in me,” Narine added.
“I haven’t played international cricket in so long and this shows how much they want me to come back. It was good to have some conversations with them and I feel we’re all on the same page going forward.”
West Indies, champions in 1975 and 1979, begin their World Cup campaign on May 31 against Pakistan in Nottingham.
(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; editing by Sudipto Ganguly)