Beaton has a long road ahead, says King

By Akeem Greene

Former Windies speedster Reon King has given empathy to budding fast-bowling prodigy Ronsford Beaton, who was recently suspended from bowling in international cricket due to an illegal action.
King, who during his 19 Tests and 50 One-Day Internationals produced some venomous pace, remodelled his action in 2000 while in England, not because it was illegal, but to make himself more effective. He contends that the real obstacle is overcoming the mental stress.
“The mental stress of remodelling your action…because (having) it deemed an illegal action would be rough. When the conformation comes, it is even more weight on your shoulders, and you are devastated,” the 42-year-old King told Guyana Times Sport on Friday.
King last played Test cricket in 1999 against South Africa. He contends that Beaton “needs to take himself out of action, and surround himself with some good technical advice”.
“With the amount of cricket being played now and the stage where Beaton is, and also the proliferation of fast bowlers we have, obviously it is a lot of work he has to do. I don’t think he himself would think it is just a walk in the park, and soon as his action is rectified he will walk straight back into competitive cricket,” King declared.
The right-arm seamer from Newtown, Kitty further indicated that the 25-year-old Beaton has to gather confidence in his new action, and transform it into good performances. It is that process, King stated, that usually takes time.

Receptive of information
Recently, in a section of the media, acting president of the Guyana Cricket Board and president of the Essequibo Cricket Board, Fizul Bacchus, lambasted Beaton, stating, “He should accept full responsibility for his bowling action”.
Bacchus was quoted as saying, “Beaton never listened to the Essequibo Cricket Board or the Guyana Cricket Board. You can’t talk to Beaton. He never listens to anyone. He’s just not a disciplined player”.
On the contrary, King, who is a Cricket West Indies Level Three-qualified coach and ICC Match Referee, feels Beaton is quite receptive to advice.
“I spoke to him prior to him doing the test. The impression I got from him (is that) he is not the type of person (who doesn’t listen). I think he wants to learn. He is definitely one for the future,” declared King.

Personal coaching
While it will not be a panacea for all the problems cricketers face, King firmly believes it is crucial for players to have competent personal coaches.
“Something for Beaton and other players to consider is (for them) to surround themselves with persons (who can) give solid technical advice. Cricket is a skill-based sport…,” King said.
Cricket West Indies has enrolled Beaton in its fast bowling camp in Antigua as part of his remedial programme. Thereafter, he will undergo a reassessment process, and if successful, he will be allowed to participate at the international level.
Beaton was reported for suspect action during the second ODI against New Zealand last December.  The ICC noted that the international suspension would also be recognized and enforced by all national cricket federations for domestic cricket events played in their own jurisdictions; but with the consent of CWI, Beaton may be able to play in domestic events in the Caribbean.