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Sarwan drought adds to WI misery

Throughout his career, there have been two versions of Ramnaresh Sarwan. One, a classy number three while the other would embarrass even a club cricketer. N Ananthanarayanan reports.

cricket Updated: Jul 04, 2011 02:00 IST
N Ananthanarayanan

Throughout his career, there have been two versions of Ramnaresh Sarwan. One, a classy number three while the other would embarrass even a club cricketer.

After 87 Tests, the Guyanese has aggregated only 5,842 at an average of 40. And his latest ordinary run could not have come at a worse time for the West Indies.

Sarwan, who’s been dropped for the third Test, has not scored a half-century in his last 12 innings. His last century came seven Tests and two years ago. He was out for 18 and 8 in the drawn second Test. Poor shot selection caused his downfall in the second innings at the Kensington Oval like it did when his team were looking to save the first Test.

The plight of Sarwan and young opener Lendl Simmons has dimmed the gritty efforts by Marlon Samuels and Darren Bravo in a batting line-up that has been letting down the bowlers repeatedly. Both Simmons and Sarwan, who were in good touch in the ODIs, have perished playing too many shots too early.

“We had every belief we had the chance of getting to the target,” said Sammy, who was again left to defend the batting.

“We’ve at least seen guys take more responsibility in putting runs on the board,” he said. “Our bowlers have been doing well, so if we put runs on the board we can put pressure on India.”

There has been criticism that Sarwan has lost confidence under coach Ottis Gibson. Whether that is true or not, he has clearly lacked focus in this Test series.

“Sarwan is one of our experienced players but he is going through a bad patch. We as a team have been supporting him. At the end of the day, the selectors have a job to do. I don't think any changes will be made but we will see, because we have to try and win in Dominica, which will host its first ever Test.

“Sarwan is a classy player who has batted at number three throughout his career. Maybe that (pushing him down the order) is something we could consider.”