Former West Indies captain Brian Lara has expressed his disappointment at his long time team-mate Shivnarine Chanderpaul not getting a ‘proper send-off’ in international cricket.
Lara called Chanderpaul, who announced his retirement on Saturday, one of the giants of West Indies cricket.
“I was very disappointed that Shiv was not allowed a couple of more Test matches, not necessarily to break the record but to have a proper send-off. Something I think he is very disappointed [about] and unfortunately that did not happen.
“That guy with the most Test matches for the West Indies, playing for over 20 years, I don’t think people in the West Indies understand exactly his contribution,” Lara said.
Chanderpaul is West Indies’ second-highest scorer with 11,867 runs in 164 Tests, 86 behind Lara who scored 11,953 in 131 Tests. At 41,
Chanderpaul had not played for West Indies since May 2015; the selectors dropped him after a poor home series against England.
“Shiv, who played since 1994, had a tremendous career. I started with Shiv in Guyana and remember his first Test match against England. He has been a great servant for West Indies cricket and he has done some tremendous things throughout his career, and credit must be given to the man for how he has played.
“When I do have the opportunity to give him a call and thank him, I will because for me he was one of the giants of West Indies cricket,” Lara noted.
Meanwhile the West Indies Players’ Association congratulated Chanderpaul on a prosperous and illustrious International career.
Though not playing a Test match since last May, the 41-year-old is still the highest ranked West Indian on the ICC Test Rankings. He also holds the record and esteemed honour for batting the longest period without being dismissed in Test cricket.
Some of the awards he has received include being named one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year and ICC Player of the Year for 2008. He was also twice named West Indies Player of the Year, firstly in 2008 and then in 2014.
WIPA’s president and CEO Wavell Hinds, who played alongside Chanderpaul for the better part of a decade said: “As a fan to witness him play was to see a player of grit and determination. Having the honour of playing alongside him, I certainly saw a consummate professional who gave his all for West Indies cricket.
“Shiv’s contribution to the game has been priceless and we wish him the utmost success in his future endeavours.”
Cricket’s world governing body, the International Cricket Council (ICC), praised Chanderpaul, describing him as “a role model for millions.”
“Shivnarine Chanderpaul will be remembered as a reliable and extremely effective batsman. He was remarkable with the way he could adapt to his style, mixing solid defence and attack, to the demands of the situation,” ICC chief executive David Richardson said.
“For nearly two decades, Shivnarine not only excelled with the bat but with his sporting attitude and quiet determination became a role model for millions of youngsters.”