West Indies to play Zimbabwe at Arnos Vale
December 30, 2009
West Indies to play Zimbabwe at Arnos Vale

The Arnos Vale Playing Field here in St. Vincent and the Grenadines will host three One Day Internationals (ODI) when the West Indies play Zimbabwe in a five match series next year.{{more}}

The matches are the third, fourth and fifth of the series and are set for Wednesday, March 10, Friday, March 12, and Sunday, March 14, 2010, in what is a rarity in a home series itinerary.

Arnos Vale has hosted more than one ODI in a series on two previous occasions. The first time was in 1998 when it hosted England in back to back ODI’s, and then in 2004 when it hosted Bangladesh.

The first two ODI’s in the Zimbabwe series will be played in Guyana at the Providence Stadium on March 4 and 6.

The last time this country hosted an ODI was June 24, 2008, when Australia visited. However, this match was marred by a bottle-throwing incident nearing the end of the West Indies’ reply.

In total, seventeen ODI’s have been played at the Arnos Vale Playing Field, with the West Indies triumphing in fourteen, including thirteen consecutive wins from 1994 to 2004.

However, the last two matches saw losses for the regional side against Pakistan and Australia, respectively.

Additionally, the picturesque facility has seen two test matches.

The first was in 1997 when the West Indies hosted Sri Lanka, and the other was earlier this year when the Caribbean team faced Bangladesh in what was in controversial circumstances, as several first choice players opted out citing players’ contracts as the main reason.

The West Indies had to hastily assemble a mainly inexperienced team for the July 9 -13 engagement.

In what is a hectic year in the region, the Caribbean side will engage the South Africans in three Tests in Jamaica, St Kitts/Nevis and Barbados.

The series gets going on May 19, with a T/20 International at the Queen’s Park Oval in Trinidad and Tobago before the venue also hosts the first two ODIs on May 22 and 24.

The series will move to Dominica, where Windsor Park will host matches on May 27 and 30, and the other in Jamaica, June 2, in a five match duel.

Following a two-day warm-up match at Chedwin Park, the first Test will bowl off at Sabina Park on June 10, with Warner Park in St Kitts taking the second match from June 18-22.

The tour concludes in Barbados, with the third and final Test at Kensington Oval running from June 26-30.

Before that, the region will host the World Twenty/20 competition, both the men’s and women’s versions, sandwiched by the Zimbabwe and South Africans’ tours.

The women’s play takes place in St. Kitts/ Nevis, St. Lucia and Barbados. The men’s version will be hosted in Guyana, Barbados and St. Lucia.

As it stands, only Antigua and Barbuda and Grenada as international venues are not part of the 2010 home series.

The packed calendar for the West Indies starts in February, when they head back to Australia for a five match ODI series, all day/night matches, along with two 20/20 Internationals against the host.

In July, the West Indies heads to England for four tests and five ODI’s, and in November they head to Sri Lanka for threes tests and five ODI’s. (RT)