West Indies’ Test captain Jason Holder was among the players who joined first session of their practice after the lockdown on Monday. Image Credit: AFP

Barbados: Members of the West Indies Test team, which will be touring England in a few months, have returned to training in small groups at the Kensington Oval after the lockdown for the COVID-19 pandemic.

After an extended period away from the nets, captain Jason Holder and several teammates took to pitch on Monday. Holder was joined by Kraigg Brathwaite, Shai Hope, Kemar Roach, Shane Dowrich and Shamarh Brooks - all of whom played in the last Test match against Afghanistan in India last December. Another Test player Raymon Reifer also participated in the training.

“The initiative to get back to training has been given local government approval, with strict protocols of social distancing, observing the guidelines as set out by the authorities and CWI’s Medical Advisory Committee and was conducted behind closed doors,” Cricket West Indies said in a media statement.

“Other players across the region are expected resume training later this week as Cricket West Indies (CWI) continues dialogue with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on the proposed tour which is expected to feature three Test matches.”

The tour, which was due to start on June 4, stands postponed until at least July because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s great news that the players are now able to begin their cricket training, having been restricted to fitness and conditioning work at home for the past few weeks, as we begin to prepare for defending the Wisden Trophy,” said Johnny Grave, CEO of CWI.

“Our next Board of Directors’ teleconference is on May 28 and if the tour has to take place as currently planned, by the start of June, we would need to have their approval and support by then in order to get the charter flight logistics in place and select the players.

“We are in the final stages of discussions with the ECB and we expect to hear from them shortly once their bio-secure plans have UK government and ECB Board support,” he added.