Caribbean captaincy conundrums April 14, 2006

Lara in running for captaincy

Mark Pouchet

Brian Lara: Will the prince be crowned again? © Getty Images
Brian Charles Lara, who has twice held and twice given up the captaincy of the regional team, could be the next captain of the embattled Caribbean squad.

This is according to Joey Carew, the chairman of selectors, who said Lara along with six other players - Denesh Ramdin, Chris Gayle, Daren Ganga, Sylvester Joseph, Wavell Hinds and Ramnaresh Sarwan - is being considered for the contentious captaincy post. And the replacement for recently-resigned Shivnarine Chanderpaul could be known "within three days", according to Carew, who said he had not anticipated Chanderpaul's withdrawal.

Those cricketers, along with Chanderpaul, were present at a specially-arranged leadership seminar by the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) and the University of West Indies (UWI) at UWI's Cave Hill campus in Barbados in January, prior to the team's departure for the tour of New Zealand. "The captain will come from those six that went to the seminar," Carew disclosed when contacted yesterday. "And Brian [Lara] is also being considered for the position."

Chanderpaul's departure has forced the WICB to consider their seventh captaincy change for the Test team in the past nine years. In his 14 Tests as captain, Chanderpaul presided over one win and ten defeats. And, in his last two series in Australia and New Zealand, he averaged 14.50 and 14.80, respectively, with the bat.

Carew observed that the debate over the right man for the job would rage on no matter who is eventually named to the post. "Everybody has a different answer," he reasoned. "You hardly ever find anybody with the same choice, so we have to be careful with what we do. We have to think this through and cover all the bases. The public might not agree, but you have to do what you feel is the right answer for the benefit of West Indies cricket."

He added that the choice of captain would be influenced by the 2007 World Cup and the Test match series in between. "Everybody calls a name but not everybody gives a reason, "Carew mused. " needs a lot of debate and consideration."

Besides the selectors, he explained that the newly-appointed Cricket Committee, with Clive Lloyd as chairman, will have their input as well before the recommendation is passed on to the WICB for final ratification.

"I believe the Cricket Committee will be conducting their discussions over the phone," said Carew. "But I expect, within three days, we'll have an answer to who will be the new West Indies captain."