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March 19, 2010
Jamaican wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh jnr has been included in West Indies' provisional 30-member squad for the World Twenty20 to be staged in the Caribbean late next month.
The wicketkeeper's slot is something of a worry for new coach Ottis Gibson, following Denesh Ramdin's disappointing performances in the recent matches against Australia and Zimbabwe. Besides Baugh and Ramdin, the other in the running for the position are Andre Fletcher, Chadwick Walton and Devon Thomas.
Of the frontline wicketkeepers in the regional competition, Baugh is the best batsman with a solid first-class average of 36.45 and 11 hundreds, though he has played only a handful of Twenty20 matches. He hasn't impressed on the international stage yet, last having played for West Indies in December 2008, a Twenty20 game against New Zealand.
Fletcher and Walton have been let down by their batting as well in recent matches for West Indies, and it is believed the selectors may not risk to exposing 20-year-old Thomas to such a high-profile competition at this time.
There were no real surprises in the squad except for the axing of left-hander Brendan Nash. Ramnaresh Sarwan and Jerome Taylor, who have been out of action with injuries, are likely to undergo fitness assessments before the selection panel, headed by Clyde Butts, name the final 15.
West Indies have been drawn in Group D, along with England and Ireland, and will be playing their league matches at the Providence Stadium in Guyana. They open their campaign against Ireland on April 30.
West Indies probables for the 2010 World Twenty20: Lionel Baker, Adrian Barath, Carlton Baugh jnr, David Bernard jnr, Sulieman Benn, Darren Bravo, Dwayne Bravo, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Royston Crandon, Travis Dowlin, Narsingh Deonarine, Andre Fletcher, Chris Gayle, Wavell Hinds, Nikita Miller, Runako Morton, Kieron Pollard, Denesh Ramdin, Ravi Rampaul, Kemar Roach, Darren Sammy, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Lendl Simmons, Devon Smith, Dwayne Smith, Jerome Taylor, Devon Thomas, Gavin Tonge, Chadwick Walton
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Would he have fared better than the incumbent middle-order batsmen, Root and Ballance?