[Trinidad Express] – Former West Indies Players Association (WIPA) president Dinanath Ramnarine has called the dropping of Shivnarine Chanderpaul from the West Indies squad for the Australian home series “disgraceful” while former West Indies pacer Tony Gray said people should not be too emotional about Chanderpaul’s non selection since he was not producing the runs.
“First of all, it was most unfortunate that the West Indies selectors would treat yet another great West Indies cricketer who has been a loyal servant in the most disgraceful manner,” Ramnarine told the Express.
Ramnarine said Chanderpaul had showed true commitment and loyalty to WI cricket and the manner in which he was dropped was unbecoming.
“When I saw recently the president of the WICB Dave Cameron say that Chanderpaul would be given a special send-off, I was waiting to see what would be done to celebrate his long-standing and successful career. But then I saw the team and Chanderpaul was left out, it is so consistent with the WICB, how they have treated great players in the past including Brian Lara, Sir Vivian Richards, Desmond Haynes,,” he said.
Ramnarine compared the Chanderpaul situation with how other top cricketers like Steve Waugh, Shane Warne, Sachin Tendulkar were given the opportunity to play in front of home crowds and get a proper goodbye, and also cited the example of English Premier League footballer Steven Gerrard of Liverpool whose fans got an opportunity to say goodbye recently.
“The WICB missed an opportunity to make this (Australia) series a send-off for Chanderpaul, lost another opportunity to build back trust with fans and to celebrate Chanderpaul career for being the dependable batsman that he was,” Ramnarine stated.
Ramnarine said the WICB continues to speak about loyalty from the players and fans but didn’t understand that loyalty and respect is a two-way process.
However, Gray believed that the WICB selectors had a job to do ” and you can’t get too emotional about the situation.”
“They looked at the two previous series and he was really struggling, so you can’t be emotional. The important thing is who they replaced him with and once that person has been making runs, it is okay,” Gray said, adding that he had heard rumours that Chanderpaul was spoken to.
But Ramnarine said the other aspect that needed to be highlighted with a proper send-off for Chanderpaul was how he started and what he brought to the game.
“Forget about the records and how much success he had at international cricket, that is not the most important thing. What is important is that he came from humble beginnings and achieved and the WICB should have used to that as a motivating factor to the younger players to show that if Chanderpaul was able to make it at highest level and succeed then everyone can,” Ramnarine said.
“But as I said, it is typical of how the WICB have mismanaged top players’ departure from WI cricket. Cameron said he wanted Chanderpaul to be treated special. Well if this is special, I wouldn’t want to see if they treated him in a bad way. Lord alone knows what would happen,” Ramnarine said.