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January 13, 2007
"It is a dream come true." That was Kieron Pollard's reaction to being named in West Indies' provisional 30-man squad for the World Cup. Only a week after scoring a century on his first class debut for Trinidad and Tobago in the regional Carib Beer Series, Pollard has been picked to train for the World Cup in March. The squad also includes West Indies A player, Gavin Tonge and Trinidad and Tobago allrounder Reyad Emrit.
The call-up to the regional squad came as a bit of a shock to Pollard but it was all part of his plan, albeit, it happened a bit earlier than expected. "I always dreamt of playing for the West Indies but I had no idea it would be so soon", Pollard said. "Right now I am focusing on the task at hand which is to defeat Guyana (in the current Carib Beer second round game). My main goal is to perform my best and when the training camp starts then I'll worry about the final selection. "Everyone has an equal chance of being selected but I think I have a very good chance of making it into the final 15 for the World Cup. I am happy with my current form and once I continue to perform consistently, I think I can be a positive attribute to the West Indies squad."
Pollard, who burst onto the scene with impressive hitting during the Stanford 20/20 tournament last year, attributed a lot of his success to the senior players on the T&T squad. "Playing with senior players has been a big help to the younger guys. They have been there for us and it is a great feeling to play in a squad with those guys".
Emrit also had dreams of playing for West Indies but admitted that later was better than never. After playing one game for West Indies A, Emrit was named in the 15-man squad to tour India for a short one-day series.
He admitted that he had some problems with his bowling recently but said he had been working with coaches and hoped to get it right in time for India. "I have been working on swinging the ball more consistently and I think that will be a great asset on the tour", said Emrit. In terms of his chances of making it to the final World Cup squad Emrit said: "It means a lot. It is every cricketer's dream. I have been working very hard in the past year and I think as long as I have a good tour in India my chances will only get better. Dreams do come true and I am looking forward to the tour and the World Cup".
World Cup probables
Brian Lara, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Chris Gayle, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Dwayne Smith, Omari Banks, Carlton Baugh, Ian Bradshaw, Dwayne Bravo, Patrick Browne, Corey Collymore, Narsingh Deonarine, Travis Dowlin, Fidel Edwards, Rayad Emrit, Ryan Hinds, Wavell Hinds, Sylvester Joseph, Rawl Lewis, Dave Mohammed, Runako Morton, Daren Powell, Keiron Pollard, Denesh Ramdin, Darren Sammy, Marlon Samuels, Lendl Simmons, Devon Smith, Jerome Taylor, Gavin Tonge.
© Trinidad & Tobago Express