Ganga, Pierre in T&T squad
Former skipper Daren Ganga is in the 14-man Trinidad and Tobago squad for this weekend's "Asia versus the Caribbean" T20 tournament, starting tomorrow, while young left-arm spinner Kharry Pierre could debut for T&T after his first senior team call-up.
Ganga was named on T&T's understrength team, to be led by allrounder Rayad Emrit. Eight frontline players are unavailable, as T&T continue preparations for the 2012 Champions League, in October in South Africa.
Eight of T&T's players are in the West Indies camp in Barbados. Regular skipper/wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin, opener Lendl Simmons, pacer Ravi Rampaul, leg-spinner Samuel Badree and left-handed batsman Darren Bravo are with the Windies squad ahead of the World T20. The other three players--Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo and Sunil Narine--are also in the West Indies camp, but will be campaigning for their IPL franchises—Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings and Kolkata Knight Riders, respectively—in the Champions League.
Fast bowler Shannon Gabriel is back in action for T&T after injuring his back on West Indies' tour of England earlier this year. Colourful chinaman bowler Dave Mohammed, hard-hitting opener William Perkins, West Indies batsman Adrian Barath and T&T middle-order bat Jason Mohammed are also in the squad.
Despite T&T fielding a weaker team, Bangladesh, who arrived in the country for the tournament on Monday, will not be underestimating the hosts.
"The best (T&T) team is not playing because all the boys are in the [West Indies] camp," pacer Mashrafe Mortaza told CCN TV6 yesterday following a Bangladesh morning training session at Queen's Park Oval. "The rest of the guys I'm not sure who are the guys that [will play], but we'll take them very seriously."
Bangladesh are "definitely confident" and hoping to "play good cricket" in the competition. "We're very serious about it," he stressed.
To Mortaza, T20 cricket levels the playing field between teams because of how short the matches are. He feels there are no weak teams in the competition.
The pacer is expecting to play a crucial role for his team with the ball, and is hoping to contribute with the bat as well. Still, he said, a team win is most important.
"Obviously it's going to be a very tough tournament for us," Mortaza said. "No one is the easier side in T20. So we have to [play] our best cricket in here, and after that, the result, anyone can win, so hopefully we'll do well and win the match." —Kern De Freitas
Rayad Emrit (captain), William Perkins (wicketkeeper), Evin Lewis, Adrian Barath, Jason Mohammed, Dave Mohammed, Daren Ganga, Sherwin Ganga, Shannon Gabriel, Navin Stewart, Yannick Ottley, Justin Guillen, Kharry Pierre, Kevon Cooper; David Williams (coach), Kelvin Williams (assistant coach), Omar Khan (manager), Oba Gulston (physiotherapist).