"Its a great honour"
--says new WI captain Hooper on his appointment
by Donald Duff in Jamaica
March 3, 2001
Carl Hooper's elevation to the captaincy of the West Indies cricket team was greeted with great joy yesterday among local cricket fans and as is expected the man himself was highly elated.
When Stabroek News caught up with Hooper yesterday at the Guyana team hotel, in Kingston where they are preparing for the Busta Shield final, he described his appointment as a great honour.
"Obviously its a great honour, I can't put my feelings into words to be given the opportunity to lead such a great cricketing nation," the 34-year-old all-rounder said.
"I'll try my best to turn around the fortunes of West Indies with the help of fellow cricketers, the West Indies board and the cricketing people," he added.
"It is something that I never sat down and thought about even though I knew my name was mentioned," the Guyana captain explained when asked he was anxiously awaiting the decision.
"No I felt no tension whatsoever," he added.
Most of the Guyana team which will take on Jamaica from today were overjoyed on hearing the news yesterday.
Manager Legall feels its a boost for the team going into today's match and Hooper challenged his players to give him a nice reward.
"If the fellas are going to congratulate me a nice way, to do it would be to win the Busta Shield."
Now that he is the new WI captain Hooper has realised that he has only a few days to prepare.
He noted that there is not much time to get to know some of the West Indies players.
But he will attempt to do some work off the field trying to get to know the players better to start off on the right foot.
"Obviously its going to be a difficult hard job given the state of WI cricket. "Jimmy (Adams) tried hard and I hope he has a part to play in West Indies cricket," the Guyanese pointed out in assessing the effort of the former captain.
Hooper maintained that despite what has been said about him in the past he has always been and remains totally dedicated to WI cricket.
In an interview on Jamaica radio last evening West Indies Cricket Board president Pat Rousseau said he feels Adams is still good enough to be retained in the West Indies side, but pointed out that it is up to the selectors. Two years of expectation for Guyanese and West Indian cricket fans were finally realised yesterday with the confirmation of Hooper's appointment.
After almost a week of indecision the West Indies Cricket Board finally announced at 5.30 p.m. that the 34-year-old Guyanese will replace Adams for the South Africa versus West Indies Test and one-day series which begins next Friday in Guyana.
Hooper will be the first Guyanese to lead the regional team since Clive Lloyd took the squad to the top of world competition between 1975-1984, when he retired with a proud record of losing only two test series during the period. There was jubilation in the country last night as fans celebrated the appointment of one of the most loved cricketers produced by Guyana.
Carl Hooper file
FULL NAME: Carl Llewellyn Hooper.
BORN: Georgetown, Guyana, December 15, 1966.
TEST DEBUT: v India, Bombay, December, 1967.
TEST BATTING: 4,153 runs. Average 33.76. Highest score 178 not out v Pakistan, St.John's, 1993. Nine hundreds.
TEST BOWLING: 93 wickets. Average 47.01. Best figures 5 for 26 v Sri Lanka, Arnos Vale, 1997.
TEST CATCHES: 93.
ONE-DAY INTERNATIONAL DEBUT: v New Zealand, Dunedin, January, 1987.
ONE-DAY INTERNATIONALS: 182.
ONE-DAY INTERNATIONAL BATTING: 4,612 runs. Highest score 113 not out v India, Gwalior, 1987. Six hundreds.
ONE-DAY INTERNATIONAL BOWLING: 163 wickets. Average 34.03. Best figures 4 for 34 v Pakistan, Karachi, 1991.
ONE-DAY INTERNATIONAL CATCHES: 87.
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