Sunday, November 27, 2022

CWI: Captains and Coaches talk up their chances of winning CG United Super50

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29 amazing matches in store, featuring eight great teams, at four fantastic venues. The stage is set for CG United Super50 2022. We will get cracking with the opening contest of this 50-over tournament on Saturday when West Indies Academy bowl-off against Leeward Islands Hurricanes at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.

Defending champs Trinidad & Tobago Red Force open their campaign on Monday, 31 October against Combined Campuses & Colleges at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy (BLCA). The final will be played on Saturday 19 November at the SVRS. The other two venues for the tournament are the Coolidge Cricket Ground (CCG) in Antigua; along with the Queen’s Park Oval (QPO) in Trinidad.

Here we present the thoughts from inside the various camps ahead of the tournament which runs from 29 October to 19 November.

Leon Johnson (Guyana Harpy Eagles Captain):

“Our preparation has been going well. We had the inter-county tournament recently and we saw some very good performances from the guys in the squad. We had a couple days training and two practice matches as well. We’re in good shape. Looking at the make-up of the squad I would say our bowling is our stronger suit. Our batting has a lot of depth, and we have some is very experienced and knowledgeable players as well. To win the tournament we need to play well consistently. We were runners-up in the last tournament (2021) in which we did exactly that up until the final, so we just need to be better in the big games and win those critical moments.”

David Furlonge (Trinidad & Tobago Red Force Head Coach):

“We are confident. Our objective is to win the tournament. We believe that we have a good blend of experience and youth that can go all the way and our focus will be on performing to achieve that objective. We played well to win last year and we believe we can make it through the first round on home soil with home support and head over to Antigua and do the job over there once again.”

Shirley Clarke (Windward Islands Volcanoes Head Coach):

“We have a very balanced team and we have adequate resources in our batting and bowling departments. Our preparation has been a challenge with the weather intervening at times, but we have been able to complete our Windward Islands 50-over tournament and our Best v Best Series. We are presently in Trinidad where we have a pre-tournament camp, and we will look to have some warm-up games before we get into the tournament. To win, playing as a unit is going to be key and we will have to play consistently well. We have clear plans, and we will have to execute our plans confidently.”

Shai Hope: (Barbados Pride Captain):

“We have all been playing some form of cricket over the last few weeks and months, so everyone has a strong base leading into the tournament. It’s important for us to continue adding that one per cent each day to be tournament ready. If I had to pick a department where we are strongest, I would have to say our batting simply because there’s more experience. Having said that, I’m very excited to see the younger bowlers showcase their skills at this level. To win the tournament, I would say consistency is key, playing as a unit and feeding off each other will give us the best chance to be victorious at the end.”

Andre Coley (Head Coach West Indies Academy):

“The tournament will give us the opportunity for some valuable competitive cricket for the squad since most have not been in competitive cricket consistently over the last 24 months. The players are buying into a winning mindset while working together as a team to achieve goals for each match, working together as a team. We want to see them demonstrate resilience by adapting to various pitch and game conditions as they use their skill sets to achieve team goals. Also, we want to see effective decision making and self-management in a tournament environment.”

Andrew Richardson (Head Coach Jamaica Scorpions):

“Our preparation has been coming along quite well. We had five games in the build-up and we have seen a lot of positives coming from them. Our batters are coming into some form … getting better as the games went by. Our bowling has been consistent for last few seasons now. We expect to get another practice season in before departing and we expect to hit the ground running when we reach Antigua. We have quite a few quality all-rounders so therefore our strength is our all-round match-winners in our squad. To win, we would have to limit the ‘unforced errors’ in the fielding and bowling departments. We would also have to bat consistency well. Teams that bat 50 overs and post challenging totals normally do well in this format, so I expect that to be the same for winning this tournament.”

Stuart Williams (Leeward Islands Hurricanes Head Coach):

“We have a well-balanced team with some very experienced players such as Rahkeem Cornwall, Kieran Powell Hayden Walsh jr, Devon Thomas and our captain Jahmar Hamilton. We know they will lead from the front and encourage the younger players who all have a lot to offer. Consistency will be the key. In a tournament like this you will come up against some very good opponents who will gunning to win as well so you have to plan well, play well, be consistent and create winning opportunities.”

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