The President of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Dr Julian Hunte is very pleased with the performance of the Windies team and is optimistic that the team will once again reach the top. In a statement after the victory in Bangladesh, D, Hunte said the team, “continues to bring pride and joy to the people of the Caribbean, indeed a huge achievement for the team, considering the tough conditions which they play.“
But the team cannot bring home the bacon if the selectors fail to name the best squad. It is very disturbing that the selectors chose to omit veteran batsman, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, from the squad. This was the man who was named player of the recently concluded Test series for scoring a double century not out in the first Test and an unbeaten 150 in the second. I do not know how the selectors came to the conclusion that Shiv is a Test player and not suitable for One Day Internationals (ODI) – fifty overs matches. This is far from the truth. Look at his record: he played 268 ODIs and scored 8778 runs at an average of 41.60. He scored 11 centuries and 59 half centuries. In Tests he scored 10,546 in 49 matches at an average of 50.94. He hit 26 centuries and 61 half centuries.
He is by no means a slow-scoring batsman. Remember he scored the third fastest Test century when he hit the ton off 69 deliveries against Australia at GCC Bourda in Georgetown. He was chosen a Wisden player in 2008. Chanders is the most reliable batsman in West Indies cricket and his absence would be a blow to the side.
The ‘Tiger‘ is not a favourite of coach Otis Gibson who tried to change the veteran‘s style of batting, and there are reports that Gibson and a few other cricket officials were trying to sideline the team‘s most experienced and dependable batsman in their quest to groom a young West Indies team. However, because of his consistency and the fact that he is a match saver, they have decided he should play only in Tests, despite the fact that the left handler can be extremely aggressive when quick runs are needed.