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Jason Holder names skipper of Team of the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier

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Windies captain Jason Holder has been named as captain of the Team of the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2018, which was announced on Monday. Holder scored 219 runs and took 15 wickets in eight matches and inspired his side to the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 as well as to the final of the qualifiers which Afghanistan won by seven wickets.

The side was selected by a jury of cricket experts, which included former Windies fast bowler Ian Bishop, ex-Zimbabwe fast bowler Pommie Mbangwa, Australia’s former World Cup winner Lisa Sthalekar (who is also the first woman cricketer to score 1,000 runs and take 100 wickets in ODIs) as well as Ian Callender (correspondent, Belfast Telegraph) and Liam Brickhill (correspondent, ICC Digital).

 

The jury was tasked with picking a balanced side on the basis of performances in the tournament. Statistics were used, but were not the sole basis for selection. The same jury had selected Zimbabwe’s Sikandar Raza as the Player of the Tournament.

The side includes three players each from Afghanistan and the Windies, two from Zimbabwe, two from Scotland and one from Ireland.

Windies’ Evin Lewis’ opening partner is Scotland captain Kyle Coetzer, while Brendan Taylor (Zimbabwe), Marlon Samuels (Windies) and Mohammad Nabi (Afghanistan) form the middle-order. Sikandar Raza (Zimbabwe) and Najibullah Zadran (Zimbabwe) are the all-rounders, Mujeeb Rahman of Afghanistan is a specialist spinner, followed by three fast bowlers – Holder, Safyaan Sharif (Scotland) and Boyd Rankin (Ireland). Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan has been chosen as 12th man.

Meanwhile, in the latest MRF Tyres ICC ODI Player Rankings, which were released following the conclusion of the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2018, Scotland captain Kyle Coetzer is the highest ranked batsman from the competing sides in 22nd position.

Afghanistan’s Rahmat Shah has moved up nine places to claim 32nd position and has also become his country’s first batsman to touch the 600-point mark. Ireland’s Paul Stirling is 35th, Zimbabwe’s Brendan Taylor has jumped 14 places to 37th, Mohammad Shahzad of Afghanistan has claimed 47th position after rising two places, while Rameez Shahzad is the United Arab Emirates’ highest-ranked batsman in 68th spot after jumping 25 places.

The Windies’ Marlon Samuels is 49th after moving up two places and Chris Gayle has finished in 77th spot after slipping five places in the list which is headed by Virat Kohli of India.

In the bowlers’ list, Rashid Khan has handed over the number-one ranking to India’s Jasprit Bumrah. The Afghanistan wrist spinner trails the India fast bowler by 24 points.

Afghanistan’s Mohammad Nabi is 16th after dropping five places, Ireland’s Tim Murtagh is on a career-high 20th place after rising six places, Afghanistan’s Mujeeb Rahman has vaulted 42 places to secure 21st position, Windies’ Jason Holder is 24th after gaining one place, Zimbabwe’s Graeme Cremer has retained 28th position, Scotland fast bowler Safyaan Sharif has leaped 46 places to 35th spot and Andy McBrine of Ireland has occupied 42nd positon after gaining 22 places.

The all-rounders’ list is headed by Shakib Al Hasan of Bangladesh, while the biggest mover after the qualifier is Zimbabwe’s Sikandar Raza, who was also adjudged player of the tournament. After retaining 44th batting ranking and gaining three places to move to 55th bowling ranking, the all-rounder is now in 12th position after rising two places.