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Jamaica Trip Useful In A Limited Way

By Orin Davidson

For the second time in two months, a United States senior team will embark in international competition.

This time around they will take on a Jamaica representative lineup today in Jamaica to launch the opening of the Trelany Stadium that will host a number of practice matches and World Cup 2007’s opening ceremony.

The team selected comprises a varied mix of established players, new ones and some old stagers, which in the context of United States cricket’s development is not in its best interest.

Indeed it was an endearing gesture by the organizers to invite our national team because they could’ve chosen either of the many higher profile countries around the world.

At the same time it was an opportunity for the Steve Massiah captained squad to continue where they left off at the Americas Cup and soak in much needed exposure to allow the guys to gel more as a unit.

However, the selections made were a far cry from the squad which placed second, in the process narrowly failing to wrench the title from World Cup bound Bermuda.

Of the lot named, only Massiah, Lennox Cush, and Imran Iwan were retained from the Canada experience.

Oldstagers like Mark Johnson, who was one of the many discards from the squad of 1995 and prior, is included while untried youngsters like Dunane Nathaniel , who represented the national Under-19 team at this year’s World Cup and Renardo Francis also made the cut.

From all appearances, this was not a team selected by the United States of America Cricket Association (USACA) rather one identified solely by the organizers.

No one wants to knock the Air Jamaica/Jamaica Tourist Board’s generosity to the U.S. team , but in an ideal situation, one would’ve preferred to have seen the likes of Sushil Nadkarnie, Chintan Patel and Omar Usman included in the side, following their good performances in Canada.

Also the talented Rashard Marshall could’ve used the opportunity to boost his considerable batting talent after he was erroneously left out of the Americas Cup squad.

Rather it seemed the lineup has a Florida bias with a few courtesy picks from New York.

Nevertheless, we are grateful for the chance to at least play a part in the World Cup experience, regardless of the how marginal it is.

Tri State Series
The just concluded Tri State series for New York Under-19 players, could not have been staged at a batter time.

With nothing much in store this summer for the national junior squad, it was beneficial for the continued development for the many national players from Big Apple teams.

Also it has brought out the best in a number of other fringe players for the national squad.

Karan Ganesh, who missed on the World Cup squad for eligibility reasons, was outstanding and proved he is one good batsman for the future of U.S. cricket.

Fittingly he led his team Eastern American Youths to victory in the final and deserves huge kudos for a job well done. Also it was a good run for the Andre Kirton led Tri State Youths who were runners up.

And last but not least, commendations are in order for the organizers, sponsors and coach Linden Fraser and coordinator Kris Prasad for bringing off an event in a time of need.

Orin Davidson Column Homepage

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