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T&T start prep for Caribbean T20

By Roger Seepersad

Trinidad and Tobago youth wicketkeeper batsman Nicholas Pooran was named in a list of 17 cricketers who will start training on Monday in preparation for the 2013 Caribbean Twenty20 which takes place from January 6-20 in Trinidad and St Lucia.

Pooran, who represented T&T at the regional Under-17 and Under-19 tournaments this year, is the only specialist wicketkeeper in the list released yesterday by the T&T Cricket Board.

Also included in the training squad is Queen's Park Cricket Club captain Justin Guillen and his club teammate, left-arm spinner Kharry Pierre.

Guillen hit a half century in the Barbados Cricket Association Sagicor General T20 recently.

The list of 17 players represents those who are available for training with four leading players missing because of regional duty with the West Indies team currently in Bangladesh.

Another key player all-rounder Dwayne Bravo is recuperating from a thigh strain picked up during the West Indies' T20 World Cup triumph in Sri Lanka.

The T&T players on the West Indies squad are Sunil Narine, Darren Bravo, Denesh Ramdin and Ravi Rampaul.

The West Indies are scheduled to play two Tests, five One-Day Internationals and a one-off T20 in the month-long tour of Bangladesh and the T&T players are expected to return in time to line up for the defending champions in January's regional T20.

Chairman of the national selectors Dudnath Ramkessoon said yesterday that the available players will be divided into two groups for intensive training sessions under technical director David Williams, with valuable input from trainer Ronald Rogers and Kelvin Williams, who has the responsibility for youth development.

Ramkessoon said two sessions will be staged on Monday for the T&T invitees, with Group "A" taking to the field from 9 a.m. to 10:15 a.m. and Group "B" from 10:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.

Among those in the squad are Kieron Pollard, one of the most valuable players in the T20 game along with opener Lendl Simmons, Rayad Emrit and Adrian Barath.

All-rounder Kevon Cooper is also in the training squad along with pacer Shannon Gabriel.

The TTCB selectors have until November 22 to submit their final 14-man squad for the Caribbean T20 which bowls off on January 6th with host T&T taking on last year's runners-up Jamaica in the opening match at Queen's Park Oval, Port of Spain at 8 p.m.

Invited players:

Group A--Adrian Barath, William Perkins, Elvin Lewis, Jason Mohammed, Samuel Badree, Sherwin Ganga, Shannon Gabriel, Navin Stewart

Group B--Lendl Simmons, Kharry Pierre, Kevon Cooper, Justin Guillen, Yannick Ottley, Ancil Bhaggan, Rayad Emrit, Kieron Pollard, Nicholas Pooran

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