– Captain Johnson calls for batsmen to take more responsibility
By Brandon Corlette
Guyana Jaguars are locked and loaded to play their ninth-round match this season against Barbados Pride. In the match that will commence at the National Stadium Providence from 09:30h from today, off-spinner Ramaal Lewis and left-handed batsman Akshaya Persaud are newcomers to the 13-man squad. Lewis and Persaud will replace the injured Clinton Pestano and fellow Berbician Keon Joseph.
Speaking on the eve of the clash, Jaguars Captain Leon Johnson highlighted that the batsmen lacked application in the previous matches, where the defending champs failed to reach 200, in Trinidad and Jamaica.
“The guys are good enough to show that application with the bat, especially at
home,” Johnson explained.
The Jaguars Captain further added that his team are aiming to play good cricket and come out victorious against the inexperienced Barbados team. After suffering three defeats this season, Johnson and his men are eager for a victory, since the final two rounds are essential.
“Every game is important but we need to win; other teams have an extra game, so we have to play well,” Johnson disclosed.
Jaguars will play without Pestano, who has been an important asset but the
replacements are capable enough to perform. Furthermore, Johnson added that Lewis has been a successful player representing Guyana Jaguars in the Super50 tournaments in the past and he has been impressive in the nets.
Heading into the ninth round, Anthony Bramble is Guyana Jaguars’ leading run scorer with 475 runs at an average of 52.77. Bramble has two centuries this season with a high score of 168. Tagenarine Chanderpaul is second on the runs chart with 464 runs at an average of 35.69 while Captain Johnson has shown promise this season with 383 runs, averaging 31.91 with three half-centuries.
Vishaul Singh (303); Romario Shepherd (288); Chandrapaul Hemraj (286) and Christopher Barnwell (250) are the batters among the runs. In the bowling department, Veerasammy Permaul has 34 wickets while the impressive Shepherd
has 28 wickets as the leading fast bowler in the Caribbean this season.
Jaguars will miss Pestano, who has a tally of 22 wickets this season. The likely addition to the starting XI, Gudakesh Motie, has played four matches this season and has 14 wickets at a bowling average of 15.50. Barbadian Raymon Reifer, who will be an important asset to the team, has 14 wickets this season in the four matches he played.
Meanwhile, the Barbados Pride team are an inexperienced team, but they are well led by Jonathan Carter, who has 532 runs this season at an average of 44.43, including one century and four half-centuries. Speaking to the media, Barbados Assistant Coach Emmerson Trotman and his unit are confident despite the fact that the Jaguars defeated Pride earlier this season.
“The mood is very good in the Barbados camp; we wanted to leave Windwards on a high and we did that with a victory,” Trotman explained.
He and his team that inspected the Providence pitch, which is covered with “dead grass”, stated that the Barbados Pride team are equipped with the necessary spinner, in Jomel Warrican.
Barbados Pride are looking forward to the challenge the defending champions bring to the table. Trotman revealed that the team would be announced once the conditions are analysed. Speaking on Carter’s red hot form this season, Trotman stated that he was a vital asset to the team.
Pride’s bowling will be led by their leading wicket-taker, Test spinner Warrican, who has 24 wickets, and feature Miguel Cummins, who is also hungry for Windies selection. He has 17 wickets this season, including a hat-trick in the last round against Windward Islands Volcanoes.
Guyana Jaguars full squad reads: Tagenarine Chanderpaul ; Chandrapaul Hemraj; Raymon Reifer; Leon Johnson (Captain); Vishaul Singh; Anthony Bramble (wicket-keeper/Vice Captain); Christopher Barnwell; Romario Shepherd; Veerasammy Permaul; Gudakesh Motie; Akshaya Persaud; Sherfane Rutherford; and Ramaal Lewis.