The third Digicel One-Day International between West Indies and New Zealand has been dedicated to the memory of the former middle-order batsman, who was a team-mate of most members of the squad.
Runarko Morton played 15 Tests, 56 One-Day Internationals and seven T20 Internationals for West Indies between 2002 and 2010
Speaking on Monday, West Indies captain Darren Sammy made the announcement on behalf of the team.
Sammy and Vice-Captain Dwayne Bravo have decided to go one step further and donate their match fees to Morton’s wife.
“We want to show our appreciation for Runako, who was one of us and remains one of us. He played with most of the guys in the team and he was loved by everyone. He was a real team player and gave his all for every team, every time he walked onto the field,” Sammy said of Morton.
“We know he was born in Nevis and played for Nevis before he played for Leewards and West Indies. During this series, we won’t be going to Nevis so we decided to pay tribute to Morton here in St Kitts, which is next door to Nevis.
“We thought this would be the ideal way to pay tribute. As players and as a team we are fully in support of this initiative as we remember a man who has been a great team-mate and a brother. It will be a big occasion on Wednesday as we remember Morton while we look to win, make it three on a trot, and take the series.”
West Indies lead the five-match series 2-0, following wins in Jamaica last week.
Wednesday has been declared a Public Holiday by the government of St Kitts & Nevis and Sammy urged the fans of the twin-island federation to come out and support the Windies as they look to maintain their dominance over the Black Caps.
“Wednesday will be a chance to clinch the series, so we will look to do that and take the series at Warner Park. We are enjoying our success. Everybody looks in good form, and every day someone stands up for us which is good for the team. We always enjoy cricket in St Kitts and we know the people will come out and support us. Normally the pitch is very good and the outfield is very fast,” Sammy said.
“The last home series we had against Australia the home support was magnificent and we also got massive support from the fans in Florida and Jamaica. When you look into the crowd and see the fans cheering, it’s like an extra player. We expect the same here in St Kitts and we know the people will come out and support their team.”