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Windies win Powell struggle

Ricardo Powell is determined to step out of the giant shadow of Brian Lara at the World Cup and erase the misery of his last appearance at the game's showpiece.

india Updated: Feb 19, 2003 20:02 IST

Ricardo Powell is determined to step out of the giant shadow of Brian Lara at the World Cup and erase the misery of his last appearance at the game's showpiece.

Back in 1999 in England, the Jamaican played just one game and it was a bitter introduction to the big time as he conceded 16 runs off his only over against the Pakistanis at Bristol and made no impression with the bat as his side lost by 27 runs.

But here the 24-year-old is making up for lost time.

Against South Africa at Newlands he hit an unbeaten 40 to help get his team off to a winning start in the tournament, and then smashed his sixth one-day 50 in the abandoned match with Bangladesh at Benoni.

"Ricardo is an awesome player when he gets started," said skipper Carl Hooper and the facts back him up.

His half-century against Bangladesh came off just 31 balls and featured four sixes. It was the quickest 50 of this World Cup and it took his strike rate to over a run a ball - only Pakistan's Shahid Afridi can boast a similar record.

It is a testament to his self-belief that Powell wasn't rattled by his tough World Cup baptism four years ago - just after that tournament, he really made his mark in Singapore where he made 51, 46 and then a sensational 124.

That innings came off just 93 balls and featured nine fours and eight sixes.

But that hasn't helped his career in the longer form of the game as his reputation as a slogger means that he has only ever made one Test appearance - against New Zealand in Hamilton in 1999, where he made 0 and 30.

"I am not really worried that I am basically playing one-day cricket now," said Powell who has hit 61 sixes in 57 one-dayers.

"I guess I have performed a bit better at the one-day level so far and that's probably the reason why the selectors feel inclined to use me in those games."

First Published: Feb 19, 2003 19:43 IST