Chanderpaul as Guyana captain over Sarwan What the People say about...
By Andre Haynes with photos by Jules Gibson
Stabroek News
September 29, 2003

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Last week we asked the man/woman-in-the-street for their thoughts on Shivnarine Chanderpaul’s controversial appointment as captain of Guyana’s Red Stripe Bowl team over Ramnaresh Sarwan.

Sondra Lowe - proprietrix: `They both have the experience but Chanderpaul has more and I believe the more experienced player ought to captain the team. I think that Sarwan would make a better back-up. Many people can argue that because Sarwan is vice-captain of the West Indies team he should have been given the job but I thought even that was premature. And you notice it took him a while to get back in form afterward? He was shaky at first. I think he’s too young and it detracts from his performance as a batsman because it’s another responsibility altogether.’

Kiran Khelawan - musician: ‘I’d put Chanderpaul over Sarwan because he is more experienced and has more ability and more maturity. Sarwan is still young in cricket and he still has a long way to go. I agree that he may need more exposure but I don’t think he should have been placed as vice-captain in the first place. If they place him as captain it puts a lot of pressure on him that might affect his performance.’

Kenneth Boyce - self-employed: ‘Chanderpaul deserves the captaincy. He has the experience from serving as vice-captain under Hooper and is one of the more dependable batsmen in the West Indies and Guyana teams. He always produces the goods at the crucial times. He is more of a utility player and the more senior player between the two. People are making an issue out of the fact that Chanderpaul cannot express himself properly. But the most important thing is what he does on the field. People are not looking to hear Chanderpaul talk. They are going to see him bat and play cricket. They say that Sarwan’s being groomed to be the next West Indies captain but that doesn’t mean that he will be.’

Verna Wilburg - retired teacher: ‘I think Sarwan should have been given the job. He has the ability - leadership qualities and education - which are important, especially for discipline in the sport. Overall I think he is a better sportsman than Chanderpaul who just looks like he is playing for the sake of playing, I don’t think he has a love for the game. What is also important is the ability to communicate properly, fluently because our captain should be an ambassador for the country. Another reason why Sarwan should have been chosen.’

Roy Puran - accountant: `I agree with Chanderpaul’s appointment. The selectors are right. I think that he should have been the one that they appointed vice-captain of the West Indies. He is a more experienced player. He was the vice-captain under Hooper and he should have been made captain after him. Anyway I think he will be a good captain because of his experience. Some people say that Sarwan should be given the captaincy because he is the West Indies vice-captain and is next in line. But they should remember that Lance Gibbs was vice-captain under Sobers for years and they never made him captain.’

Harold Madramootoo - electrical contractor: `I think it’s a great move. Chanderpaul has been in the team for a couple of years and he has lot of experience. Maybe Sarwan in the next two years but right now Chanderpaul’s the most experienced. Sarwan will follow in his footsteps, he’s young and he will be around for a lot longer.
I don’t think it’s a question of ability, it’s experience. Sarwan still has a lot to learn. He still has a few faults in his game, a little bit of an attitude problem - he’s a little arrogant. Don’t get me wrong, I like his style. But Chanderpaul has already matured, he’s learnt a lot from Hooper and he’s ready to lead the team.’

Rodlyn David - waitress: ‘I think Chanderpaul is fit for the job. He looks like he is capable of handling the team, especially if you judge from the way he manages himself. Never mind the fact that Sarwan is West Indies vice-captain I think Chanderpaul deserves a chance to prove himself. Plus he makes a lot of runs, he doesn’t ‘out’ easily and you can depend on him. I won’t comment about Sarwan.’

Khemraj Mahase - skid operator: ‘I feel that is the best thing that can happen to Chanderpaul. He deserves it. It’s his time now. Look how long Carl Hooper had to wait before he was appointed captain.
I think Chanderpaul will do a better job for Guyana and can do a better job for the Caribbean because he is a stronger player. Although Sarwan is doing well, never mind his young age, I think he needs to learn more.’

Magali Carter - self-employed: `I don’t think Chanderpaul will make a better captain than Sarwan because he doesn’t know how to speak properly. It bothers me. I think Guyana’s captain should be able to express himself fluently. That’s my only problem with him.’

Harry Joseph - self-employed: `It’s not a problem, Chanderpaul’s appointment. I think his experience makes him the best man to lead the team. He has always been more cautious and more consistent and I think that makes him a better player.’