Shivnarine Chanderpaul deserves a perfect send off: Brian Lara
Kingston: West Indies batting legend Brian Lara has severely criticised the Cricket Board's move to axe Shivnarine Chanderpaul from the national team and has called for an honourary send off to the veteran batsman by including him in two-Test home series against Australia.
The selectors, led by Clive Lloyd, left out 40-year-old Chanderpaul from the 12-member squad for the first Test against Australia. In his last 11 innings, Chanderpaul has averaged only 16.
But Lara feels the decision was just another example of the way the WICB disrespects its players. "This has nothing to do with numbers or averages. What are they saying that Chanderpaul was given the last 11 innings to get the desired number of runs to break a record? This has absolutely nothing to do with runs or numbers.
It has to do with respect and Chanderpaul has earned the right to say goodbye in an acceptable way," Lara was quoted as saying by 'Trinidad and Tobago Guardian'. The snub effectively means the end of Chanderpaul's illustrious career, in which he has scored 11,867 runs at an average of 51.37.
Shivnarine Chanderpaul. Pic/Getty Images
Lara has urged the WICB to reinstate Chanderpaul for the two Test matches against Australia and the series be looked on as his final series.
"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... He deserves it. The WICB and the Caribbean owe it to Shiv to send him off with dignity and respect. He has earned it," he insisted.
Lara pointed out that most of the other cricketing nations ensured an honourary farewell to their heroes. Citing Sachin Tendulkar's example, Lara said: "What did they (BCCI) do? They organised a Test series in his honour and gave him a farewell in keeping with his contribution to the game."