Former captain of the Red Force, Daren Ganga, has been omitted from the T&T team for the upcoming Champions League in South Africa. Both Ganga and Dave Mohammed were part of the team that played in the recent Asia versus the Caribbean T20 series at the Queen’s Park Oval. T&T finished third behind eventual winners, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. Ganga, who has led the team on its two previous Champions League appearances, fell out of favour with the national selectors after the regional 50-overs tournament last year. He made a token appearance in the Regional First Class season but was handed picks for the Florida Independence series, as well as the Asia versus the Caribbean series.
Mohammed, on the other hand, missed most of the year but returned for Florida and the Asia versus the Caribbean series. Ganga’s brother, Sherwin, retains his place in the team after some useful performances against Bangladesh and Barbados last weekend. Ottley, who was very miserly with his left-arm spin and also scored a quickfire unbeaten 53 against Bangladesh, not surprisingly booked a place on the team. Ottley, a former West Indies Under-19 player, will be joined by fellow under-19 player, Evin Lewis, who has been scoring briskly in the matches he has played. Five of players on the West Indies team in Sri Lanka will fly across from that tournament to join the rest of the team in South Africa. They are skipper Denesh Ramdin, Samuel Badree, Ravi Rampaul, Darren Bravo and Lendl Simmons.
The other players on the team are fit-again Adrian Barath and Kevon Cooper, as well as all-rounders Rayad Emrit and Navin Stewart. Cooper, who was injured recently will be able to resume training next week. Hard-hitting batsmen William Perkins and Jason Mohammed are also included and a lot will be depending on them in the absence of ball-beaters Keiron Pollard and Dwayne Bravo.
The full team is: Denesh Ramdin (captain), Evin Lewis, Lendl Simmons, Adrian Barath, Darren Bravo, Yannick Ottley, Jason Mohammed, Rayad Emrit, William Perkins, Kevon Cooper, Shannon Gabriel, Samuel Badree, Ravi Rampaul, Navin Stewart and Sherwin Ganga.