London: Experienced West Indies batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan has brushed aside suggestions of a late call-up to the team for the current tour of England. Sarwan is one of the three key players missing for the three-Test tour, starting later this month. The other two are opener Chris Gayle and all-rounder Dwayne Bravo.
Sarwan, who is currently contracted to Leicestershire for the full English County season, said his focus is on scoring runs and helping Leicester excel. "I do still have ambition of playing for West Indies, but at the moment I'm not thinking about that," he said. "They have a tour here but I've signed a contract to play a full season so I don't know … For me, I just want to concentrate on playing cricket. I was out for about eight months and I didn't play any cricket, so I think this is an opportunity for me to find my feet and try and score as many runs as I can."
The 31-year-old is one of the West Indies team's most seasoned campaigners, but has not played for the side since the second Test against India in the Caribbean last July. He has been plagued with injury that also ruled him out of selection for the Guyana squad.
Sarwan has quickly found form for Leicestershire, striking 105 against Derbyshire last month, and said he was hoping to extend his good patch. "I've had quite a few starts. Unfortunately, I didn't convert a couple, but nevertheless I'm pretty happy," said Sarwan, who has tallied 5,842 from 87 Tests at an average of 40.
"It's early in the season and it's quite difficult to bat, so it takes a lot of concentration and shot selection. Hopefully I'll be able to continue and get some big scores. I think I've done well over the years. Obviously I'm here now playing for Leicestershire and hopefully I'll have a successful season and the club will be able to do well."
Sarwan was chosen to lead Leicestershire in their last few games after regular skipper Matthew Hoggard was ruled out with injury. And the former Guyana and West Indies captain said he has enjoyed the experience, despite being thrust into the new role.