MUMBAI, India (CMC) — West Indies team manager Sir Richie Richardson has backed embattled off-spinner Sunil Narine to emerge from his current crisis a better bowler than he was before.
Narine was twice reported for a suspected illegal action during the Champions League Twenty20 here and eventually banned from bowling in the tournament.
West Indies cricket officials subsequently pulled Narine from the 14-man squad to contest the five-match One-Day International series against India starting in Kochi tomorrow, in order to allow the player to have a further assessment of his action.
Sir Richie said while the situation was a stressful one, he believed Narine had the character to rebound strongly.
“Nobody wants it to happen to himself. Nobody wants it to happen to anybody. It’s unfortunate. He has just got to go home, think about it and come back,” the former Windies Test captain said.
“And I know that that’s his approach, that’s his attitude. He would obviously be disappointed but he is not down. Knowing the character that he is, he is not gonna let that get him down. He is gonna go back and work. He is gonna come back with a bang. And he is gonna come back an even better bowler.”
He continued: “These things will happen and it’s how well you handle these crisis that proves the strength of character that you have. I know he is a very strong individual. He might seem very easy going, very quiet but deep down he is a very confident, strong individual.”
Narine’s late omission is a huge blow for West Indies as they prepare to face India. The 26-year-old is the number two ranked bowler in ODIs and Twenty20 Internationals, and has been particularly effective on Indian surfaces while playing for Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League.
Sir Richie admitted Narine’s absence would be felt but urged the Windies to rise to the occasion and play at their best against India.
“We can’t do nothing about that (Narine’s omission). We just have to focus on what we have to do. We were positive even without him that we can play well against India and beat India,” Sir Richie said.
“That’s the attitude we have got to adapt. Things happen in life that you have no control over [but] the most important thing for you is to always pick yourself up and go forward.
“Sometimes when you lose a major player, other players dig deeper, somebody else comes to the fore. And that’s what we want to see.”
Narine has been replaced in the squad by combative left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn.