In the 18th century, the British East India Company sent many Indians to the Caribbean Islands as indentured laborers in the sugarcane plantations. Many of those people stayed in the Caribbean islands of Jamaica, Trinidad, Guyana, etc., and adopted the local culture and lifestyle. With the spread of British colonialism, the game of cricket, too, spread. Many from the Caribbean, including the native Indians, took up the sport and since then have represented the region under West Indies. Let us have a look at the Top 10 Indian-origin Players to have played for the West Indies-
1. Rohan Kanhai
Rohan Bholalall Kanhai is often tagged as one of the best West Indian players in the era of the 1960s. A wicket-keeper-batter, Kanhai was part of the West Indian team that emerged victorious in the inaugural World Cup in 1975. Throughout his career, he played with the likes of Sir Gary Sobers (whom he succeeded as the West Indies captain), Clive Lloyd, Alvin Kallicharan, Andy Roberts, etc. In his honour, former Indian opener Sunil Gavaskar named his son Rohan. In 2009, he was inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame.
2. Sonny Ramadhin
Sonny Ramadhin was the first Indian-origin player to play for the West Indies. He could bowl both off-break and leg-break without a lot of change in his action. He broke the record for bowling the most number of balls in a test match (774). In 76 innings, he picked up 158 wickets at an average of 28.98.
3. Alvin Kallicharran
Alvin Isaac Kallicharran was an Indo-Guyanese player who represented West Indies for 9 years. He was a left-handed batter and a right-arm off-spinner. In 1972, he became the first West Indian to score centuries in two consecutive matches from the debut. In 109 test innings, he has 12 centuries and 21 half-centuries to his name, not to forget his average of 44.43.
4. Shivnarine Chanderpaul
Shivnarine Chanderpaul was the first Indo-Caribbean cricketer to play 100 test matches for the West Indies. He debuted in a Test match against England in 1994 in Georgetown. In 553 international innings, he has 20988 runs, 41 centuries, and 125 half-centuries to his name. He averaged 51.37 in test cricket. He was most famous for his unorthodox batting stance.
5. Ramnaresh Sarwan
Ramnaresh Ronnie Sarwan was a former captain of West Indies in all three formats. In an ODI against India in 2006 in Basseterre, Sarwan became the 3rd West Indian batter to score a century in his hundredth ODI match. In 339 international innings, he has scored 11944 runs at an average of 40.48. His best figure is a whopping 291, which was a test match against England in Bridgetown in 2009.
6. Sunil Narine
Do you remember any bowler taking crucial wickets in IPL but just giving a small fist pump in celebration? More often than not, this must be Sunil Philip Narine. He is predominantly a mystery right-arm off-break bowler. But in recent years, he has shown his potential as a top-order batter. In 51 T20I matches, he has 52 wickets at a strike rate of 21.1. But what makes him unique is his economy of 6.01, which is the 4th-best in history. He helped West Indies win the 2012 ICC T20 World Cup, its first global title after the 1979 World Cup.
7. Ravi Rampaul
Ravindranath Rampaul is a right-arm fast-medium bowler potent for swinging the ball both ways. But he is also a handy left-handed tailender. He holds the highest individual score (86*) by a No. 10 batter. He did so against India in 2011 in Vishakhapatnam. In ODI cricket, he has two 5-wickets hauls and eight 4-wicket hauls in 88 innings, finally summing up into 117 wickets.
8. Denesh Ramdin
Denesh Ramdin is a wicket-keeper batter born in Trinidad and Tobago. He captained the West Indies team in the 2004 U19 World Cup, in which the team ended up as runner-up. Ramdin’s right-handed batting and swiftness behind the stumps earned him a maiden international callup in a Test match against Sri Lanka in 2005. He shares the record for the most stumpings (4) in a T20I match with Kamran Akmal. He also has taken the 3rd-most number of catches behind the stumps in his T20I career (43).
9. Devendra Bishoo
Devendra Bishoo is an Indo-Guyanese leg-spinner born in New Amsterdam in Guyana. He made his international debut in an ODI against England in 2011. With his simple bowling action, Bishoo registered the figure of 4/17 in his debut T20I against Pakistan in 2011 in Gros Islet.
10. Charran Singh
Charran Kamkaran Singh was yet another Indo-Trinidadian to play for West Indies. He played just 2 Test matches and took wickets. His international tenure lasted for just about one and a half months, as he played his last test in 1960. It is said that Singh’s run out in a test match at Port of Spain triggered a riot against the umpire and the opposite English team.