|Posted by anccricket on October 30, 2008 at 1:53 AM|
Full name Ramnaresh Ronnie Sarwan
Born June 23, 1980, Wakenaam Island, Essequibo, Guyana
Major teams West Indies, Gloucestershire, Guyana, Kings XI Punjab, Stanford Superstars
Playing role Batsman
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Legbreak
A nimble, Chaplinesque right-hander, Ramnaresh Sarwan was brought up in the South American rainforest around the Essequibo River. After his first Test innings, 84 not out against Pakistan, Ted Dexter was moved to predict a Test average of more than 50 - an unfair millstone to hang around any young player's neck. But on his first tour, to England in 2000, Sarwan lived up to the hype by topping the averages. His footwork, which seemed to require no early trigger movements, was strikingly confident and precise.
It was a surprise when he then produced a horror run of three runs in five innings in Australia, but against India in 2001-02 he was back to his composed best. Sarwan, who took over as Brian Lara's vice-captain in March 2003, required 28 matches and 49 innings to post his maiden Test century, 119 in December 2002 - and even then it came against the less-than-mighty Bangladeshis. But, as the likes of Graham Gooch and Steve Waugh can testify, the first time is often the hardest, and since then, his batting has achieved a greater level of consistency. A dream series against South Africa in 2003-04, where he averaged nearly a 100 runs a Test, was followed by a lean run against England. But he battled on, and returned to form in a stunning manner with an unbeaten 261 against Bangladesh in June. Then came the England tour in 2004 where he began and ended the tour on a low note, but was prolific in the middle. However, West Indian fortunes were on the ascendancy in one-dayers, as they reached the finals of the NatWest Series and then won the ICC Champions Trophy with Sarwan playing a big hand in both tournaments. However, he was one of the players involved in the contract dispute between with WICB and missed the first Test against South Africa in 2005. On his return he scored attractive runs, but was again overlooked for the captaincy when it was handed back to Brian Lara. He didn't fare well with the bat in the 2006-07 season, averaging just 25.90 in 13 games he played till the end of the Champions Trophy. In a shocking gesture, he was dropped from the second Test against Pakistan in the away series in November. He returned for the third Test and sustained a foot injury which kept him out of the one-dayers against Pakistan and the tour of India. He turned in some solid performances at the World Cup and was named as the captain following the retirement of Brian Lara. It wasn't exactly a field full of promising candidates. Injuries limited his appearances in 2007, and a friendly captaincy competition between Sarwan and Gayle continued with both players publicly supporting one another. Sarwan was Gayle's deputy on his return to the side in 2008 for the home series against Sri Lanka but the demotion did not affect his output, and he made three half-centuries and a hundred in the two Tests.