King out with injury
-- from Australia tour, Colin Stuart selected

by Orin Davidson
Stabroek News
October 18, 2000

Paceman Colin Stuart has won his first West Indies tour call-up but his compatriot Reon King, the last Guyanese Test fastbowler in 18 years has been sidelined for the vital Test series tour of Australia next month.

Stuart is among four Guyanese in a 16-man touring party which has three newcomers in a distinctly changed squad from the disastrous recent tour of England.

King who displayed great promise in his first three full series with the regional team but had an indifferent England tour was omitted because of injury.

Chairman of the West Indies selection panel Michael Findlay told Stabroek News yesterday from Jamaica via telephone, that the right arm speedster has a stress fracture of two bones in his foot.

"Reon complained in Antigua (during the Red Stripe Bowl) of pain in his foot and he was flown to Jamaica yesterday (Monday) for tests which according to the doctor revealed the fractures," Findlay explained.

"Last night we got the results from the doctor and he will have to rest for six weeks," Findlay added.

King who was troubled by a back problem in England, played in Guyana's first three matches in the Red Stripe Bowl but was left out for the final game against Bermuda on Sunday.

The 24-year-old King was expected to play a key role in Australia due to the retirement of Curtly Ambrose. But his injury has resulted in three untested fastbowlers winning selection.

Stuart along with Trinidadian Marlon Black and Kerry Jeremy will have their debut tours and Merv Dillon has won a recall. Veteran Courtney Walsh will make another trip Down Under and completes a lineup of six pacemen with Nixon McLean.

Injury prone Shivnarine Chanderpaul, exciting batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan and leg spinner Mahendra Nagamootoo are the other three Guyanese in the squad.

Experienced batsman Chanderpaul who has missed West Indies duty consistently since 1998, will obviously be under close scrutiny at fitness tests during a camp for the squad from next Monday in Jamaica. Findlay stated that players would be replaced if they fail the tests. However, Chanderpaul was declared fit to play by Guyanese sports medicine specialist Monica Benn (see accompanying story).

Sarwan and Nagamootoo who made their first tours to England were not surprisingly retained.

But experienced Guyana all-rounder Carl Hooper was not considered as according to Findlay he was ineligible. "We were informed that Carl could not be considered because he did not play in the Busta Cup as is required, Findlay explained. He added that players qualify by playing in both the Busta Cup and Red Stripe Bowl competitions. Hooper represented Guyana in the Red Stripe Bowl.

A surprise selection is veteran Barbadian wicketkeeper Courtney Browne who is recalled after last representing West Indies in 1997.

The 29-year-old gloveman was preferred to the young Wayne Phillip who was backup wicketkeeper to Ridley Jacobs in England.

Findlay explained that Browne was considered a better batsman as Phillip is not considered good enough with the bat for competition of the level expected in Australia.

Darren Ganga, who bats in the middle order for Trinidad, is one of only two openers selected, Findlay said, along with Sherwin Campbell. The Trinidadian is recalled at the expense of Adrian Griffith who with allrounder Chris Gayle and fast bowlers Franklyn Rose and Corey Collymore were dropped.

Star batsman and former captain Brian Lara who experienced sight problems in England and is currently sidelined by injury, will be subjected to the fitness test at the camp, Findlay said.

Squad: Jimmy Adams (captain), Sherwin Campbell (vice captain), Darren Ganga, Brian Lara, Shiv Chanderpaul, Courtney Browne, Nixon McLean, Colin Stuart, Mahendra Nagamootoo, Wavell Hinds, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Ridley Jacobs, Courtney Walsh, Merv Dillon, Marlon Black and Kerry Jeremy.

The team for the one-day series to follow the Tests will be selected at a later date.

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