Over seven short days of cricket, Shamar Joseph announced himself as the sport’s next star-in-waiting.
Virtually unknown before he was handed his West Indies cap for the first Test in Adelaide, over the course of a three-day first Test loss and extraordinary four-day victory in Brisbane, Joseph became cricket’s hottest prospect.
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The 24-year-old has flown in the face of many compatriots by declaring his love for Test cricket, at a time when Twenty20 franchises are throwing around millions of dollars.
But it hasn’t taken long for the rumour mill to crank up about where the ridiculously talented Joseph could soon be heading.
Adelaide radio show Roo, Ditts & Loz on Triple M tried desperately to organise an interview with the young star on Monday morning.
While that was unsuccessful, it did lead to some information from “someone close to him” about a team he would love to play for, according to the show’s Chris Dittmar.
“Right this one is from the world of cricket,” Dittmar begins on-air. “The West Indies beating us yesterday, first time since ‘97 for the Windies (in Australia), historic win, great win by them.
“Let’s go back to the Adelaide Test. Shamar Joseph burst onto the scene, debutant, took five wickets, made 50-odd runs, got Steve Smith out with his first ever ball in Test cricket.
“Then, man of the match up at the Gabba, took seven-for and rock and rolled Australia.
“So he’s the absolute star. We’ve made many, many phone calls overnight to try to get him to appear on the show this morning.
“Now he’s unavailable and that’s understandable. He’s celebrating and good on him, but we put in the request.
“People close to him have come back to us with the message, this is true, this is in front of us, it’s on our phones, they said ‘look, he’s unavailable’, this is someone close to him, ‘(but) please keep him in mind’.
”He wants to play for the Adelaide Strikers and his dream is to play under the coaching of Jason Gillespie.”
As rumours go or second or even third-hand information, it’s a doozy.
Gillespie, an accomplished fast bowler who took 259 wickets in 71 Tests for Australia, has spent almost 15 years making his way through the coaching ranks.
Leading teams in the Indian Premier League, English County cricket and in domestic cricket with South Australia and the Strikers, Gillespie has a strong coaching reputation and has previously been linked with the Australian job.
Dittmar added that the lure of Adelaide Oval was appealing to the young West Indian quick.
“He loves the Adelaide Oval, fell in love with it, and wants to play with Jason Gillespie and the Strikers,” he added.
“Let’s hope they can all make that happen.”
Joseph’s man of the match and man of the series performance was desperately needed by the tourists, considering they were missing a number of their first team.
That includes Jason Holder and Kyle Mayers, who chose to play in T20 tournaments over Test cricket.
Joseph’s comments after the match, however, would be music to West Indies selectors’ ears.
“This is my dream, to play cricket for the West Indies,” he said.
“I’m not afraid to say this. I will always be available to play for the West Indies, no matter how much money comes towards me.
“I will always be here to play Test cricket.”
It remains to be seen if he also has time for the BBL.