Suspense over the final composition of Bermuda's historic World Cup cricket squad heightened yesterday after Bermuda Cricket Board (BCB) postponed naming a final group of 15 players until the new year.
Citing reasons ranging from injuries to recommendations regarding the physical and psychological state of individual players as it relates to Associate Member standards, the Board's selection committee instead named a squad of 19 players who will travel to Trinidad and Tobago on a training exercise early next month - 15 of whom will be chosen to represent the Island in Kenya later in the month.
Bermuda will compete against Canada, Netherlands, Ireland, Scotland and host-country Kenya during the ICC World Cricket League Division One for one of two spots in the ICC 20/20 World Championship to be held in South Africa next September.
Bermuda's final 15-member World Cup squad will then be announced on their return from Africa on February 11.
National coach Gus Logie said yesterday's postponement could benefit team members who are not currently in the best state physically or mentally.
'This is a further opportunity for the squad players to get themselves in the best possible shape both mentally and physically for the upcoming World Cricket League and then the World Cup,' he added.
It was, however, revealed yesterday that veteran spin bowler Hasan Durham had been omitted from the national team for tactical reasons, while youngsters Arthur Pitcher jr, Azeem Pitcher, Delyone Borden and OJ Pitcher have all been recalled.
The Board also confirmed that Bailey's Bay batsman Irving Romaine would captain Bermuda's first World Cup squad in Trinidad and Tobago next March, while wicketkeeper-batsman Dean Minors has been chosen as vice captain.
It was also learned during yesterday's press conference, held at BCB headquarters on Gorham Road, that the unorthodox bowling action of veteran spinner Durham had again came under the scrutiny of match officials during the Island's tour of Kenya last month.
'There were times on tour when the umpires were very suspect (about it) and felt that if he continued things could be very difficult for him,' Logie said. 'He was never officially written up, but the match officials and match referee spoke to me about him.'
Only last August, Durham was reported by match officials in Toronto and was summoned to the UK where he was eventually cleared to resume playing after having his bowling action closely monitored and assessed by experts.
The Board, meanwhile, also confirmed that medium pacer Ryan Steede would not accompany the national team to Trinidad for next month's training camp, but will instead remain on the Island under the close scrutiny of a physiotherapist.
College students OJ Pitcher and Delyone Borden will also remain training with their national team team-mates until the Board announces the final squad of 15 to compete in the World Cup in February.
It was also confirmed yesterday that Lionel Tannock (team manager), Herbie Bascome (assistant coach), Craig Brown (physiotherapist) and Lorenzo Tucker (team analyst) will travel to the World Cup with the Island's national cricket team next March along with coach Logie.