The West Indies have dropped Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan and Shivnarine Chanderpaul for the first two of five one-day internationals against Pakistan.
Whether this is actually a strong move, we don’t yet know. It depends whether any of them return. The Windies’ coach, Ottis Gibson, has had fairly transparent opinions about these players though. He thinks they don’t really give a shit, which may well be true.
Chanderpaul is pretty old now, so dropping him from the one-day side does make sense. Ramnaresh Sarwan was dropped for a while as an up-the-arse kick, but the anus pain only seemed to spur him to continued mediocrity.
Gayle’s a bit different. He is far and away the most intimidating West Indian batsman and while he certainly appears like he doesn’t give a shit, we’re reluctant to judge, because we know better than anyone that ‘appearing to not give a shit’ and ‘not giving a shit’ are entirely different things.
There’s some interesting stuff about Gayle at WICB Exposé, a site which is fairly self-explanatory if you look at the various categories it boasts: Abuse of Power, Nepotism, Mismanagement, Hypocrisy, Financial Erosion, Dirty Tricks and good, plain old-fashioned Corruption.
As a hilarious footnote to this, we found WICB Exposé by following a link from Lalit Modi’s Twitter account.
When you’ve already taken five wickets in a nine over match, as England did, you’d hope to have worse batsmen at the crease than Ramnaresh Sarwan and Shivnarine Chanderpaul. England’s six and seven were James Foster and Graeme Swann, for example.
Needing 10 an over is no cause for panic for Sarwan and Shiv. Most batsmen’s kecks get heavier with every passing delivery with that sort of run rate and overs fast running out. They increasingly try and launch every delivery with all their might. Sarwan and Shiv take the other approach.
You watch Sarwan glance the ball into the legside and think: ‘Well, at least it’s only one.’ But then the ball keeps rolling and gently plods over the boundary with no fielder in sight. He’s only gone and put it where the fielders aren’t. How ingenious.
Ramnaresh Sarwan’s current batting form is so sublime, it’s ridiculous. To average 150 this series with a worst score of 94 is sublime. To outdo Shivnarine Chanderpaul in terms of crease occupation is just ridiculous.
We’ve a sneaking suspicion that Ramnaresh Sarwan may have become a sadhu. Sadhus are famed for doing something arbitrary for a ludicrous duration – typically standing on one leg for eight years or waving maniacally for a decade. Ramnaresh Sarwan seems to have chosen something a bit more productive for his ritual. He’s decided to renounce all his worldly goods and concentrate on scoring runs against England.
He looks like he could carry on indefinitely.
Ramnaresh Sarwan is a batsman who’s tended to do well when we’ve been looking the other way. Early in his career, he was mighty. After that he alternated between injured and mediocre. Now he’s having a bit of a resurgence.
Sarwan has an uncanny knack of not doing anything when he bats. He doesn’t maintain this state indefinitely, but it does last an abnormally long time. The ball gets to within an inch of him and you’ve still no clear idea as to whether he’s going to leave it or pan it to the boundary.
On the downside, he has a creepy lack of eyebrows. If we didn’t have eyebrows, we’d damn well make the effort to grow some.