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By Peter Della Penna
A selection camp is being organized by USACA to take place from
December 18-19 in Florida in order to select a final squad to go to
Hong Kong for ICC WCL Division 3 in January.
Pic (Right): Former West Indies cricketer Neil McGarrell was short-listed for the selection camp [File photo]
Multiple sources have confirmed that 18 players have been invited
to the camp. According to USACA Cricket Committee chairman Krish
Prasad, the camp will be held at the Central Broward Regional Park in
Lauderhill or Brian Piccolo Park in Cooper City.
Seven players who have never played for USA at the senior level
have been invited to the selection camp, meaning that there will be at
least three new players touring with USA for the first time. They are
Ryan Corns, Durale Forest, Hussain Haidar, Elmore Hutchinson, Ritesh
Kadu, Asif Mehmood Khan and Neil McGarrell.
Three players who were part of USA’s WCL Division 4 winning squad
in Italy have not been invited to the camp. Nasir “Charlie” Javed,
Steven Taylor and Adrian Gordon did not make the list. In regards to
Gordon’s omission, head coach Clayton Lambert hinted at the possibility
of it at the conclusion of Senior Nationals.
“We are anticipating that the wickets are going to be turners,
kind of Asian-style wickets,” said Lambert. “Instead of overloading on
the fast bowling side, we were looking to keep the senior fast bowlers
and try to bring in more allrounders and include a few spinners in
there.” One source indicated that Gordon’s exclusion is also related to
eligibility constraints for the entire squad.
It is understood that Gordon is currently qualified to play for
USA as a “deemed national,” a player who has lived in the USA for more
than 183 days in each of the previous four years but less than seven
years. According to ICC rules, only two players under this
classification are allowed to be in any Associate or Affiliate member
starting XI. Players such as McGarrell and Kadu also fall under the
same classification. In order to make room for them should they be
picked for the final 14, someone needed to make way.
McGarrell is a favorite for selection after his strong
performances in USACA tournaments this year. The team is seeking to add
a left arm spinner and he will be competing with Khan to claim that
position. Kadu is also a potential pick as a reserve gloveman.
First-choice wicketkeeper Carl Wright struggled with the bat this year,
averaging 17.62 in 18 50-over matches for USA in 2010 with only one
half-century against Jersey at WCL Division 5 in Nepal last February.
Off-spinner Abhemanyu Rajp, who claimed two Best Bowler awards in
USACA tournaments this year, was not invited to the camp. The squad is
currently overloaded with off-spin options including Muhammad Ghous,
Lennox Cush, Timroy Allen and captain Steve Massiah. While South East
off-spinner Haidar has been invited, Rajp is left on the outside
It is also notable that not a single player from the 2010 National
Champion North West Region squad was invited to the camp. North West
vice-captain Saurabh Verma represented USA on their February tour to
the UAE and Nepal, but has not played for USA since.
Players invited to the USA selection camp from December 18-19 in
Florida: Steve Massiah (captain, New York), Sushil Nadkarni
(vice-captain, Central West), Timroy Allen (South East), Orlando Baker
(Central West), Ryan Corns (Central West), Lennox Cush (New York),
Kevin Darlington (New York), Durale Forest (Atlantic), Muhammad Ghous
(Atlantic), Hussain Haidar (South East), Elmore Hutchinson (South
West), Ritesh Kadu (South West), Asif Mehmood Khan (Central East),
Rashard Marshall (New York), Neil McGarrell (Atlantic), Usman Shuja
(Central West), Aditya Thyagarajan (South West), Carl Wright (New York).