Rizwan Cheema to captain in Bermuda
Cricket Canada has settled on a squad for their upcoming engagement at the ICC America's Division One Championship in Bermuda, but it does not include regular captain Ashish Bagai, who is being rested ahead of what is to be a gruelling push to the 2011 World Cup. Rizwan Cheema, who deputized for Bagai during the tour of Sri Lanka earlier this year, will captain the side in Bagai's absence.
"With Ashish unavailable for this tour we are looking to Cheema and Chohan to lead this team to a good performance," said Chris James, chairman of selectors. "We have confidence in our young players to perform in this competition but are looking to see some good contributions from the senior players as well."
The head coach of the national side, Pubudu Dassanayake, was pleased with the squad and expressed his hopes that the team could return the America's championship trophy to Canada. "We have just come out of a tough tour of the West Indies and are looking to build up into the WCL Division 1 and continue on into the World Cup," he said. "Our expectation for this team is high and we are looking to reassert ourselves in the region."
Dassanayake will hand the team over to former Canadian captain and current Cricket Operations Officer Ingleton Liburd for the Bermuda tour as he will be participating in the upcoming Cricket Australia Conference in Australia at the time. This annual conference involves the majority of Australia's full-time state and national coaching, sports science and sports medicine staff.
Second Vice President Vimal Hardat backed Liburd to do well with the team, saying "Ingleton Liburd is one of our all time great players and we feel very comfortable handing over the reigns to him for this tour. The expectation will be high but we are confident he can deliver."
The team training camp has already started in Toronto, and the squad will leave on May 27 for the championship in Bermuda, which runs from May 28 to June 6.
Canada squad: Rizwan Cheema (capt), Khurram Chohan, Harvir Baidwan, Trevin Bastiampillai, Umar Bhatti, Rustam Bhatti, Parth Desai, Sunil Dhaniram, Jimmy Hansra, Calvert Hooper, Sandeep Jyoti, Nitish Kumar, Usman Limbada, Zubin Surkari