Holder aims to stay on top of his game for Afghanistan series

Jason Holder (CWI photo) 

Fresh from celebrating the recent triumph in the Caribbean Premier League with Barbados Tridents, Jason Holder, has now switched his attention back to his duties as West Indies allrounder and Test captain.

The Test match talisman is heading off to India where he will feature in all three formats for the series against Afghanistan. The teams meet in three T20s, three ODIs and a Test match. West Indies arrive in India on November 1 and the series goes until December 1. The matches will be played at the Ekana International Cricket Stadium in the city of Lucknow.

Holder is the Number 1 ranked allrounder in Test cricket – 58 points more than his next highest rival Ravindra Jadeja. He is also at Number 3 on the bowling table – two other West Indians feature in the Top 20 Kemar Roach (9th) and Shannon Gabriel (19th).

The highlight of Holder’s year so far was a magnificent 202 not out over England in Barbados. It was a career-defining moment which led the West Indies to a superb victory as the regional side regained the prestigious Wisden Trophy for the first time in a decade.

“We had a great start to the year in Test cricket when we beat England at home, so we want to end the year on a high. We have the match against Afghanistan and that will be a good contest in overseas conditions. Every Test match is important. Test match wins don’t come easy, so we know how hard we have to work. The guys are really up for this challenge and it would be very good to finish off the year well on a personal note as well as on a team note,” Holder said.

The 27-year-old has impressive numbers. In 39 appearances he has scored 1,887 runs including three centuries. He also has 101 wickets (average 27) including six five-wicket hauls – the most recent last month against India in the second Test at Sabina Park. West Indies will face England against next June as they defend the Wisden Trophy Holder already has one eye on that tour – with three Tests at the Oval, Edgbaston and Lords.

“That’s the major challenge on the horizon for the Test team as we look ahead to the future tours programme. We will be going back to England to contest the Wisden Trophy and also to continue the quest for very important points in the ICC World Test Championship. Last time we played in England we had a magnificent win at Leeds, so there is all to play for,” Holder said.

Looking ahead to the return to the T20 International format, Holder added:

“Feels great to be back in the T20 side – and to be playing in all three formats for the West Indies again. It was great to win the CPL with the Tridents and I did quite well, so happy to be back for West Indies. We are gearing towards the T20 World Cup coming up in just under a year and I want to be a part of that. I want to play a significant part. I was part of the set-up three years ago when we won in India and that was a wonderful feeling.” (CWI)