The WICB and the Caribbean owe it to Shiv: Brian Lara
The first Test will be played on the 3rd of June.
West Indian batting great Brian Lara has come out in support of Shiv Chanderpaul. The veteran batsman who is just a few runs short of Lara’s record to become the highest run-getter in West Indies Test history was dropped by the selectors to face Australia in the Test series next month.
"This has absolutely nothing to do with runs or numbers," Lara told the Trinidad and TobagoGuardian. "It has to do with respect and Chanderpaul has earned the right to say goodbye in an acceptable way. In fact, he should be allowed to do it in his own way. The manner in which they deal with their players is despicable and should no longer be tolerated. When you look back to so many of our heroes and the manner in which they were dumped, it makes you shudder."
Lara also compared the situation with the farewell that was arranged by the BCCI for Sachin Tendulkar in 2013 and opined that Chanderpaul should have been treated in a similar manner for his contributions to world cricket.
"What did they do?" Lara asked. "They organised a Test series in his honour and gave him a farewell in keeping with his contribution to the game. In that way, there will be no hostility and whether he makes a double-century or a duck, it doesn't matter, it will be his farewell series and the entire cricketing world will know that. He deserves it. The WICB and the Caribbean owe it to Shiv to send him off with dignity and respect. He has earned it."
This comes on the back of some strong statements given out by the Guyana Cricket Board secretary Anand Sanasie, who is also a WICB director. "Let me make it clear that the president and vice-president and myself tried our best to get Shiv retained. In the end the selectors have the final say," Sanasie said. "So to those who say that this is a WICB decision, that is not true. Shiv was never told that the match in Barbados was his last and they wanted to cover up a wrong with another wrong.
"We trust that our selectors can find it within themselves to revisit this crucial matter of gross disrespect now being meted out to one of the greatest cricketers to have graced the field of play with this most ungrateful display to Chanderpaul. Shiv's record speaks for itself and we are shocked at the manner that this panel is seeking to destroy him."
The first Test begins on the 3rd of June.