The final four days of West Indies’ second Test against Australia was the only international action that took place over the past week and it is from that match where this week’s Cricket World Player of the Week must come.
Mike Hussey, Shiv Chanderpaul and Narsingh Deonarine were the stand-out batsmen on either side, with Hussey making 73 after resuming the second day on 26 and Chanderpaul (94) and Deonarine (55) putting on 130 for the fifth wicket in the home side’s first innings.
However there is really only one candidate for this week’s award and it is man of the match Kemar Roach who returned match figures of 10 for 146. He impressed in the Australia first innings by taking five for 105, but he was even better second time around, taking five for 41; and might have forced a positive result had rain not intervened on the final day. The highlight of his second innings performance was the double strike that removed David Warner and Shane Watson in the same over and reduced the visitors to 26 for two.
The 23 year-old has led West Indies’ bowling attack with considerable skill over the past couple of years, as the likes of Fidel Edwards have been largely sidelined because of injury, and has taken 58 wickets at an average of 28.72 from 16 Test matches.
He first made his name on the 2009-10 tour of Australia where he bowled with extreme pace and troubled many of the Australian batsmen including forcing Ricky Ponting to retire hurt after dealing him a particularly nasty blow.
Looking to the future, he will be licking his lips at the prospect of bowling on some early-season English pitches when the West Indies tour in May and June, and, injuries permitting, he should be around to lead the West Indies attack for some time to come.
© Cricket World 2012