Hooper to join team in Antigua

By Donald Duff
Stabroek News
October 3, 2000

The national cricket selectors yesterday named a strong 14-man team to contest this year's Red Stripe Bowl tournament which commences October 11.

This was disclosed at a press conference held at the GCB's office at Bourda.

Those present were Terry Holder, public relations officer of the GCB, Chetram Singh, president of the GCB, selectors Joe Solomon and Clyde Butts and coach Mark Harper.

The team, which will be led by Neil Mc Garrell, includes former West Indies all-rounder Carl Hooper but excludes West Indies middle-order batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul.

Chairman of the national cricket selectors, former West Indies player Joe Solomon said Chanderpaul tendered a medical certificate which stated that he would not be ready to play for another two weeks.

Chanderpaul, 24, was injured during the West Indies tour of England and was forced to return home.

Hooper, 33, announced his retirement from test cricket last year but has promised to play a season of cricket as repayment for his fans in the region.

Solomon said Hooper who had indicated that he would arrive early this month for the tournament had informed the selectors that because of the just concluded Olympics he was having difficulty in getting a flight out of Australia where he resides.

He is expected to join the team in Antigua on October 10, the day after the Guyana team leaves home.

Making a return to the team after injury prevented him from playing this year's Busta Cup is all-rounder Lennox Cush.

The team also includes two players who are on duty with the West Indies senior team in the ICC knock-out limited overs cricket tournament in Kenya, opener Azeemul Haniff and fast bowler Colin Stuart.

The side includes three opening batsmen: Haniff, Ricardo Mohammed and Andrew Gonsalves but is minus regular opener Nicholas de Groot who is one of eight stand-by players.

The full squad of 14 players is:- Azeemul Haniff, Ricardo Mohammed, Keith Semple, Lennox Cush, Travis Dowlin, Narsingh Deonarine, Neil Mc Garrell (captain) Mahendra and Vishal Nagamootoo, Reon King, Colin Stuart, Carl Hooper, Andrew Gonsalves and Kevin Darlington.

Former national fast bowler Pat Legall is the manager and former national middle-order batsman Harper is the coach.

The stand-by players are Andre Percival, Vishal Arjune, Nicholas de Groot, Roderick Lovell, Eion Katchay, Reon Griffith, Kevin Bazil and Zaheer Haniff.

Harper, brother of West Indies coach Roger Harper said the team will concentrate on a programme which entails physical fitness, practice sessions and a warm-up game this week at possibly the GCC ground.

The players will be involved in the Inter-County final which is scheduled for Saturday at Diamond between Berbice and Demerara but a planned benefit game for the late West Indies player Roy Fredericks has been pushed back until after the team returns from the Red Stripe Bowl competition, Singh said.

Guyana is in Group `B' along with the Windward and Leeward Islands, the Cayman Islands and Bermuda.

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