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Friday 17 August 2018
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Bungling selectors

In this Nov 20, 2015 file photo, Jeremy Solozano celebrates after scoring his first hundred for the TT Red Force.

Sherdon Pierre

TT Red Force batsman Jeremy Solozano was in full preparation mode to join the Red Force team in Barbados a few days as a replacement player for the ongoing Regional Super50 2018 tournament only to surprisingly find out, on Tuesday afternoon, he was no longer selected.

Instead, all-rounder Rayad Emrit, off-spinner Jon-Russ Jagessar, and young batsman Kamil Pooran have been called up to the Red Force squad to replace Jason Mohammed, Evin Lewis and Sheldon Cottrell who are leaving to join the West Indies team for the World Cup qualifiers starting March in Zimbabwe.

The original replacement trio was West Indies batsman Lendl Simmons, Emrit and Solozano but Simmons was recently drafted for the Pakistan Super League hence the changes were made.

A frustrated Solozano said, “Last week, Dudnath Ramkissoon (Cricket Operations Officer Trinidad & Tobago Cricket Board — TTCB) called me to collect my uniform. On Tuesday morning, I called to inform him that I was on my way to collect it then he told me I was no longer on the team.”

He continued, “A few hours later, I received a call from the Chairman of Selectors Raphick Jumadeen saying that I have been replaced but to keep working hard.

He spoke about my poor form in the four-day cricket.” The left-handed opening batsmen then asked, “How could you judge me for 50 overs on my four-day cricket scores?” The 22-year- old said he scored 80 runs in the only 50-over trials held by the Red Force.

Efforts to contact Jumadeen proved futile, however, one of the selectors at the TTCB Lincoln Roberts disclosed, “Solozano was initially selected but, the chairman decided that Solozano had his chance and he is going with Pooran now. Jumadeen selected Pooran because he wanted someone new and different.”

Former West Indies and TT batsman Roberts admitted that the chairman should have called Solozano earlier in the week to inform him of the decision made.

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