Thu | Jun 4, 2020

Palmer replaces Bonner in Scorpions squad

Published:Tuesday | January 7, 2020 | 12:33 AMLennox Aldred/Gleaner Writer
Palmer Jnr
Palmer Jnr

Skipper John Campbell remains confident, as former captain Paul Palmer Junior has been drafted into the Jamaica Scorpions squad for the opening West Indies Championship four-day match against Trinidad and Tobago, at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy starting on Thursday.

The left-handed Palmer replaces Nkrumah Bonner, who is said to have contracted the dengue virus while representing the Cricket West Indies (CWI) President’s XI in Barbados.

Bonner, who missed the limited-overs tour game against Ireland on Saturday, has been instructed by doctors to rest for the next seven days, ruling him out of contention for the season opener in the Twin Island Republic.

There is, however, good news for the Scorpions, as left-arm slow bowler Dennis Bulli has been passed fit and will join the team in Trinidad.

Bulli had initially picked up a shoulder injury, while doing fielding drills with the CWI President’s XI squad.

ANTICIPATING NEXT MATCH

Meanwhile, newly-appointed captain, John Campbell, says despite the loss of Bonner, the team is in good spirits and the players can’t wait to get on the field on Thursday for the opening round fixture.

Campbell and the rest of the squad left the island yesterday and the left-hander, who led the team for two games back in the 2017 season, says he is honoured to be leading the franchise once again.

“It’s a great feeling to be given the honour to lead the team from the start of the competition, it’s always great to represent your country and I am looking forward to the challenge that the captaincy presents. I feel comfortable knowing that most of the players in this squad, I have played with since youth cricket days and all of them respect me, so it’s just for us to go out there and showcase our talent,” Campbell told The Gleaner.

Jamaica finished second from bottom in the competition last season with three wins and seven losses in their 10 games, and Campbell is keen to help turn around the team’s fortunes by leading from the front.

“I had a chat with the coach and I told him that I want to lead from the front literally by spending time at the crease. I know once I bat for long periods I will always score runs, so that is my main aim and goal for this new season,” added Campbell.

The St Ann Cricket Association player believes the team can go all the way to the top this season, but warned it will take a holistic effort from all the players, especially the senior members.

“We have a lot of talent in the squad as it’s a blend of youth and experience, all we need to do is play basic cricket and I know we will do well. The players have been performing in the practice games as well as the local franchise matches, so it’s just down to execution now,” Palmer said.

The Jamaicans will return home to face the Windward Islands Volcanoes at Sabina Park January from 16–19.