ICL: Indian Cricket League

Sarwan emerges front-runner for captaincy


sarwanMiddle-order batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan is all set to be named as the West Indies captain for their next month’s tour of England replacing the under-fire Brian Lara.

The enigmatic Lara is likely to face the axe after West Indies’ unimpressive World Cup performance which saw them losing four of their Super Eights matches. There are chances Lara, who will play his last two One-day Internationals (ODIs) this week, may not be selected at all for the tour of England in May where the West Indies play four Tests and three ODIs.

“I think the two names of Sarwan and Daren Ganga have appeared. Sarwan has been the vice-captain, so it’s up to the Board to decide on the recommendations made by the selectors,” said former captain and current manager Clive Lloyd.

Sarwan has been Lara’s deputy since 2003 and many believe he is the right choice to carry the West Indies team forward.

Sarwan last week suggested he was ready for the responsibility. “If given the opportunity I will grab it with both hands,” said the 26-year-old from Guyana, who can follow in the footsteps of countrymen like Rohan Kanhai, Lloyd, Alvin Kallicharan and Shivnarine Chanderpaul as captains.

He has led the West Indies in four ODIs, winning three. The 28-year-old Ganga has led the West Indies ‘A’ team and skippered the Trinidad and Tobago side to a domestic one-day tournament win in January this year.

When asked of Lara’s chances not being selected at all, Lloyd replied: “That is up to the selectors, I am not among them.” Lara, who led the West Indies in 47 Tests with just ten wins during his three spells, has been under fire for team’s failures and among his most severe critics has been former bowling great Michael Holding.

“Lara has to step aside, not necessary as player, but as a captain,” Holding said earlier this month. “He needs to co-operate with the new captain and allow him to have a free hand to take the West Indies forward,” he added.

Even veteran commentator-cum writer Tony Cozier sided with Holding. “During his long and otherwise celebrated career Lara has issued seven public apologies for his own indiscretions. The eighth, last week, was on behalf of his team,” wrote Cozier of Lara saying sorry after his team’s 67-run defeat against South Africa in Grenada.

“Yet he has been thrice persuaded to return to the leadership,” said Cozier of Lara who was first appointed captain in 1998.Lara also took over from Carl Hooper after West Indies’ first-round exit from the 2003 World Cup in South Africa and then from Shivnarine Chanderpaul early last year.

Lara was also at the centre of a contract row between players and the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) and had his tiffs with the selectors, the most recent being during the Super Eights matches.

Another former fast bowler Colin Croft feels the time is right for a change. “Sarwan must be given the job. I would also like to think that Denesh Ramdin must be groomed for future,” said Croft.

Source:The News

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This entry was posted on Thursday, April 19th, 2007 and is filed under Cricket, Cricket Stars.

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