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T&T target winning start against Windwards

By Roger Seepersad roger.seepersad@trinidadexpress.com

First and foremost, the Trinidad and Tobago players will be looking for a win against the Windward Islands to kick off their regional four-day campaign on a positive note.

But the players will also have the upcoming Zimbabwe tour of the West Indies on their minds.

For the T&T players, the four-day match starting today at Arnos Vale, St Vincent will be an opportunity to address the regional selectors ahead of that international series. That could be the motivation they need to step up their performances.

Shannon Gabriel, Adrian Barath, Lendl Simmons and Ravi Rampaul will all be eager to get back into the regional side after being out for various reasons.

Gabriel's back injury that saw him return from the England tour early is healed and he will be hungry to get back to the top level.

Rampaul is also back to full fitness after a knee injury sidelined him for the Caribbean Twenty20.

Barath and Simmons will also be hoping to get back into the regional side.

Simmons' last appearance for the West Indies was against Bangladesh last December, while Barath's previous match was on the England tour in June last year.

Their first test will be against the Windwards who are high in confidence following their win over the Combined Campuses and Colleges (CCC) last week when skipper Devon Smith scored back-to-back centuries. T&T made one change to their squad before leaving for St Vincent on Wednesday, calling up allrounder Yannic Cariah to replace injured middle-order batsman Marlon Barclay.

In the other game starting today, Barbados, who lost their opening match to defending champions Jamaica, face Guyana at Kensington Oval in Barbados.

Guyana won first innings points in their drawn first round match against the Leeward Islands.

Both matches start at 10 a.m. today.

SQUADS

T&T: Denesh Ramdin (captain), Adrian Barath, Yannic Cariah, Rayad Emrit, Shannon Gabriel, Justin Guillen, Amit Jaggernauth, Kavesh Kantasingh, Imran Khan, Evin Lewis, Jason Mohammed, Ravi Rampaul, Lendl Simmons.

Windward Islands: Liam Sebastien (captain), Andre Fletcher, Donwell Hector, Lindon James, Delorn Johnson, Keddy Lesporis, Garey Mathurin, Nelon Pascal, Kenroy Peters, Dalton Polius, Shane Shillingford, Devon Smith, Tyronne Theophile.

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