Touring party to be named after fitness test on Monday
By Sean Devers
Veteran West Indies left-hander Shivnarine Chanderpaul and out of favour middle order batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan have been included in a 22-man Guyana squad as preparations begin for the defence of their Caribbean T20 title in Antigua and Barbados.
The squad which also include West Indies players Narsingh Deonarine, Sewnarine Chattergoon, Travis Dowlin, Leon Johnson and Royston Crandon, was selected from the Carib/Pepsi T20 competition which climaxed on Friday night with Berbice retaining their title and the players will begin encampment from Monday at the Guyana Cricket Board Hostel and indoor practice facility at LBI.
West Indies ‘A’ team players Davendra Bishoo, Veerasammy Permaul and Assad Fudadin have also been included and GCB President Chetram Singh said that in keeping with the strict fitness policy of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), a fitness test for the players will be conducted on Monday before the final 14 man squad is named.
Twenty-year-old Jonathon Foo who helped Guyana to victory in the Regional T20 tournament and a trip to South Africa for this year’s Airtel Champions League is also in the squad.
The omission of talented HPC opener and West Indies ‘A’ right-hander Rajendra Chandrika is the only surprise while National under-19 left-arm pacer Andre Stoll and former Guyana under-19 off-spinner Steven Latcha and ex Guyana medium pacer Kellon Carmichael are the only players without National senior team experience picked.
Monday’s fitness test will also give a clear indication regarding the fitness level of Sarwan who scored a brilliant unbeaten 31-ball 64 on Friday night after returning from the USA where he opted not to participate in T20 tournament in Florida that he was billed to play in.
The 36-year-old Chanderpaul is expected to return from Sri Lanka this weekend and should attend Monday’s fitness session. He did not play in the two regional T20 tournaments that Guyana has won (2006 and this year) although he played in 2008 when Guyana lost to Jamaica in the Stanford semi-finals in Antigua.
Guyana will hope to again qualify to represent the West Indies in the 2011 Champions League in India and Sarwan is expected to be named Captain of the side once he passes the fitness test.
Injured medium fast bowler Paul Wintz is the only player not in the 22-man squad who played in this year’s Champions League in South Africa, two keepers in Derwin Christian and Anthony Bramble, have both gained selection.
Both Chattergoon and Dowlin lost their places in the Guyana 50-over side after they struggled to get the ball away at the top of the order in South Africa after consistent batting in the Carib/ Pepsi tournament.
Leg-spinner Amir Khan, the leading wicket taker in this year’s West Indies under-19 tournament and national under-19 pacer Rensford Beaton, who bowls with genuine pace, have been invited to participate in all activities with the team during their encampment period.
Guyana, the most successful team in regional T20 cricket, will face Jamaica in a night match on January 10 from 20:00hrs at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in Antigua in their opening match of the Caribbean Cup which runs from Jan 10-23.
Guyana 22-man T20 squad:- Richard Ramdeen, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Travis Dowlin, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Narsingh Deonarine, Steven Jacobs, Jonathon Foo, Royston Crandon, Derwin Christian, Veerasammy Permaul, Davendra Bishoo, Kellon Carmichael, Andre Stoll, Chris Barnwell, Anthony Bramble, Esuan Crandon, Assad Fudadin, Leon Johnson, Steven Latcha, Zaheer Mohamed, Shemroy Barrington, Sewnarine Chattergoon.
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