Bridgetown [Barbados], August 29 (ANI): Newly-appointed West Indies skipper Hayley Matthews said that the shocking retirement of Deandra Dottin during the Commonwealth Games last month has created an opportunity for a younger player to stand up.
Dottin announced her retirement from international cricket for West Indies while on national duty with Barbados during CWG 2022.
The decision came as a shock to the West Indies cricket, and Mathews revealed that, despite having conversations with Dottin on her retirement, the timing of the announcement still surprised her.
"Deandra and I had some conversations prior where she may have mentioned it," ICC quoted Mathews as saying.
"Maybe the timing of that exactly was a bit of a shock. But at the same time, I feel it was something that Deandra was ready for. I support her one hundred per cent."
Matthews accepted that it was a tough pill to swallow for a new captain (she was appointed captain in June).
"It's quite difficult to start off as a captain and miss out on one of your best players," she said.
"But at the same time, it'd give an opportunity to one of the other girls coming through the system, now being able to get a spot in the team."
Matthews also praised "game-changer" Dottin for her contribution to West Indies cricket.
"I am so thankful to Deandra for everything she has done for West Indies cricket. A game-changer, not only for the West Indies but in the world for how she played and how she carried herself out on the field. The entire cricketing world is grateful to Deandra for what she has done," she said.
West Indies booked its spot in the semi-finals of the ICC Women's Cricket World Cup 2022 in New Zealand, however suffered a defeat against champions Australia.
Matthews believes West Indies can only improve if they continue playing a fearless brand of cricket.
"When you look around the world and see the best teams in the world playing, they're really fearless," said Matthews.
"That's because they know that they definitely have all the support behind them. I just think that it's a case where as a West Indian team, we need to obviously go out there and play a fearless brand of cricket," she added. (ANI)