Shillingford likely as Rampaul suffers from stomach bug
Kolkata: West Indies on Sunday received a setback when strike bowler Ravi Rampaul was hospitalised after suffering from stomach bug, which could pave the way for off-spinner Shane Shillingford for the second Test against India, beginning on Monday.
The pacer had turned up for the afternoon practice but, after reporting of upset stomach, he had to be diagnosed further, the West Indies local manager said.
Media manager of the West Indies team, Philip Spooner, however, did not specify the cause of Rampaul`s illness, saying the team would decide on his availability after getting the medical report on Monday morning.
"He is not well and has been hospitalised for further diagnosis. We will be in a position to give further update on him after getting the medical diagnosis later," Spooner said.
Rampaul`s possible unavailability, however, should not hurt the team much as skipper Darren Sammy had hinted that they were mulling a second spin option in Shillingford in place of the pacer.
After an assessment of the wicket at the Eden Gardens, Sammy said: "The centre track minus the grass looks the same (slow as practice pitches)."
"We will definitely consider the option of the other spinner we have in the line-up. Shillingford instead of Rampaul could be possible," Sammy told reporters.
Sammy further said that they have seen footages of Sourav Ganguly opening the bowling in a Test earlier, which indicates that the wicket would stay low and slow.
"Last night I saw on television Sourav Ganguly was bowling with the new ball in Test cricket here. It is a wicket that will help spinners like you would expect in Indian conditions. The last Ranji Trophy match (at this venue) saw a lot of runs being scored," Sammy said.
The visitors played leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo with part-time off-spinner Marlon Samuels playing the supporting role in the opening Test at Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi, which they lost by five wickets.
Sammy said the bowling department was not a concern for the team.
Asked about the option of a fifth bowler, Sammy said: "To be honest, a lot of people have suggested that. But bowling has not been an issue for us. Last six to eight months we have been bowling with this combination."
"Bangladesh it worked really for us. The top batsmen applying themselves. It is a tougher opposition; we have to be prepared to bat for long periods."