Campbell is now established as the No 1 opener. He was the only batsman who came through Pakistan with his reputation intact. That is his strength, occupation of the crease, a good thing for an opener. A small man, he's strong on the cut and hook but his footwork is scratchy and he tends not to get close enough to the line of the ball.
Although he had it rough against the swing of Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis in Pakistan, I would like to see Williams given a good run. Like Campbell, he has trouble with his footwork and doesn't get forward enough to cut down the angle when the ball is moving. Williams can dominate when things are in his favour.
Some people revel in responsibility and I feel Lara will prosper as the new captain. The issue became such an obsession with him that his batting suffered. He had a poor tour of Pakistan and the absent-minded way he was stumped by Alec Stewart in the Sharjah final was clear evidence he wasn't concentrating. Now he has the incentive to lead from the front. There is no doubt about his genius, either as batsman or captain.
Although Hooper hasn't fulfilled his potential, he has been more consistent of late and is a key man. He can look even better than Lara, as was the case at times in England two years ago, as he has so much time to play his strokes. His problem is stroke selection, doing something silly when he is well set. His steady off-spin and, especially, his fielding add to his value. I'd like to see him made vice-captain to give him some motivation.
Only 23, the left-handed Chanderpaul has a remarkable record of consistency. If his style is not as fluent as Lara's or Hooper's, he has it in him to become a great player. He loves batting and, even if there a weakness in his squaring up when the ball is on the stumps, he seems comfortable with it and the coaches shouldn't try to interfere with him. He could open in the one-day matches but his place in the Tests should be No 5.
It is amazing that someone with a Test average of 56 could be left out for the last three series. A blow in the face on the England tour in 1995 seemed to have shaken his confidence and altered his style so that he was going so far across his wicket to leave his leg-stump exposed. But he was back in the runs on the A tour of South Africa and should return. He can bat, bowl useful left-arm spin, keep wicket and catch close to the wicket.
The selectors were at their wits' end looking for a reliable keeper and went back to "Wee Willie" for the tour of Pakistan. He had a few Tests when he took over from Dujon in 1991 and he is still the best we have. His glove work is good, he is no rabbit with the bat and his lack of inches isn't a handicap now that there aren't so many bouncers. But he is 33 and is a short-term choice.
Walsh's decision on his future now that he has been deposed as captain is crucial to the West Indies cause. As he confirmed in Pakistan, he remains a great bowler, who has the know-how to sum up batsmen and get them out. If he stays on, it would also be an important gesture of support for Lara. He is four Tests short of his 100th and only 23 wickets away from Malcolm Marshall's West Indies record.
Ambrose has been one of our great fast bowlers and is determined to prove to everyone he is not finished. He broke down in Pakistan with a back complaint but he says it is not serious. Even if he is now in the twilight of his days, he has done such damage to England over the years that he starts with an immediate psychological advantage. Who can forget his demolition job in that 46 all-out total in Trinidad last time?
I'm sure Bishop is still having problems with the back injuries that twice interrupted his career. Every time he lets himself go, he seems to have no control, either overstepping for no-balls or spraying all around the place. It is a pity because he had the makings of a great bowler. I can't see him going too far now unless he can regain the confidence all sportsmen need.
A strong young man, Rose had an encouraging start to Test cricket against India last season. I understand he bowled too short on the slow pitches in Pakistan but that could be put down to inexperience. He is deceptively quick, has a good outswinger and looks the type who would bowl very well in English conditions. I think he will be helped by Lara, a batsman, being captain.
Young and tall with a high action, Dillon is fiery with plenty of promise. He came from nowhere last year, getting into the Test team in his first season with raw pace. That is not a bad thing, for the other things will come with experience as was the case with the likes of Hall and Holding. He could be quite a handful on a fast pitch.
Only 21, Collins was one of the finds of the A tour to South Africa. He is a tall, slim left-armer who uses the over-the-wicket angle well. He doesn't bring it back much but hits the pitch hard and, whenever I've seen him, he picks up an early wicket or two. One for the future.
The success of Shane Warne and Mushtaq Ahmed has encouraged leg-spinners and there are now quite a few in the West Indies. Lewis has been around for some time but he hasn't come on too much. I don't see him as a match- winner, which leg-spinners should be, and he has this inexcusable habit of bowling no-balls. He still has a lot to learn.
Another leggie, I rate Dhanraj the best we have. He is in the classical mould and is a wicket-taker, one who can win a match for you. He has been our most successful spinner at domestic level but he wasn't handled well in his four Tests as far as field-placing and advice were concerned. I feel he could do a job, especially against modern English batsmen who don't seem too comfortable against good leg-spin.Reuse content