All-rounder Brathwaite in line for Windies debut

Melbourne, Dec 25 (IANS) All-rounder Carlos Brathwaite could make his long-awaited Test debut for the West Indies against Australia on Boxing Day.

The 27-year-old, a right-arm pace bowler and powerful lower- order batsman, has been a part of the West Indies set-up on recent tours, but has failed to break into the final XI, despite impressive performances during tour matches, reports CMC.

However, with fast bowler Shannon Gabriel forced out of the tour with injury after pulling up lame in the first Test in Hobart, Brathwaite now seems the likely replacement ahead of recent call-up Miguel Cummins.

“We have to look at everything. Carlos is an all-rounder; Miguel is just an out-and-out fast bowler,” captain Jason Holder said on Christmas Eve.

“Carlos has been in the squad for a little while now and he’s waiting for his opportunity, so he’s pretty much front line to go ahead of Miguel. But we’ll see how the conditions are.”

Brathwaite scored 47 and 31, and took two wickets in the four-day tour match against a Cricket Australia XI, which West Indies lost by ten wickets in Brisbane three weeks ago.

On the tour of Sri Lanka in October, he struck 54 and followed up with a blistering 113 in the two tour matches.

Earlier this year against the touring Australians, he struck an unbeaten half-century and grabbed three wickets.

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