CRICKET West Indies (CWI) lead selector, Guyanese Roger Harper feels that batsman Shimron Hetmyer needs to display the passion and consistent performances if he is to find a place in the West Indies Test squad again.
Hetmyer is one of the notable omissions from the West Indies first Test squad to face Sri Lanka, but it was expected.
“He has not played Regional 4-Day cricket for a while so he needs to really get some matches under his belt and showcase what he can do, especially at a time where a number of players coming off the Bangladesh series, grabbed places for themselves.
“He is still in the forefront of our mind and we are waiting for him to display the passion and consistent performances,” Harper, the former West Indies vice-captain said after the squad was announced on Friday.
The left-hander last played a First-Class match in March 2020 but he recently featured in the Best v Best Test trial where he had ordinary outings in both innings.
The Berbician was amongst several high-profile players who had refused to tour Bangladesh because of COVID-19 related concerns. However, Hetmyer’s fitness and consistent performances were always under scrutiny.
The hard-hitting batsman was not considered in the T20 and ODI squads for the recent home series against Sri Lanka after not passing a fitness test.
Hetmyer has failed the fitness test for the second time in a year. Earlier in 2020 when West Indies toured Sri Lanka for playing white-ball cricket, Hetmyer failed fitness tests, leading to his exclusion back then.
However, the 24-year-old subsequently met the minimum fitness requirement standard of the Cricket West Indies (CWI), after undergoing another fitness test earlier this month.
Jimmy Adams, CWI’s director of cricket had confirmed that Hetmyer has met the fitness standard and he would be available for selection for the upcoming Test series against Sri Lanka.
As per CWI regulations, their cricketers must pass the yoyo test to be available for selection. However, the board does allow some exemption to certain players who do not make the grade.
Hetmyer was in a red-hot form of late, scoring an outstanding hundred in the Regional Super50 competition for Guyana Jaguars a few weeks back.
The 24-year-old is the third-highest run-getter in the tournament behind Jason Mohammed and Jonathan Carter. Hetmyer has accumulated 280 runs in six matches at 56 while keeping a strike rate of 130.23.