Tony Cozier: Campbell - Out but Not Done (16 Aug 1998)

16 August 1998

Campbell - Out but Not Done

by Tony Cozier

Nurse To Help Campbell Rebuild Career

After 30 Tests - 27 in succession - as the West Indies' only dependable opening batsman, Sherwin Campbell finds himself having to rebuild his career.

Omitted from the tour of South Africa starting in November, he will start immediately, under the guidance of former Barbados and West Indies batsman Seymour Nurse, and continue on the planned 'A' team tour of India in November and December for which he is likely to be made captain.

Nurse, the high-scoring stylist of the 1960s and former Barbados national coach who scored 2 523 runs in 29 Tests (average 47.6), has been mandated by the selectors to work with Campbell in ironing out technical problems in Barbados over the coming months.

Campbell, who averages 37.02 in Tests, is currently playing club cricket for YMPC in the BCA Division 1 competition.

In acknowledging Campbell's credentials at Friday's Press conference announcing the team, captain Brian Lara gave an unconvincing explanation of the selectors' preference for Stuart Williams, whose record after 26 Tests is a modest average of 24.39.

"We ended the series against England with two guys emerging as a West Indies opening pair, Clayton Lambert and Philo Wallace," Lara said.

"In looking for an alternate, it came down to a choice between Williams and Campbell.

"The selectors thought it best that Williams should go to South Africa to see if he can force his way back."

Both Lara and chairman of selectors Mike Findlay made it plain Campbell's future is now in his hands.

The opener shored up the batting during the disastrous series in Pakistan last year when the West Indies lost all three Tests. He had three half-centuries in eight innings and, except for Carl Hooper, was the only batsman to average over 25.

He was dropped when he failed to pass 30 in any of his six Test innings against England. He also struggled in the President's Cup, averaging 31.33 in the five matches.

Source :: The Barbados Nation (