Simmons eager to show ability in GAW colours

By Brandon Corlette

The 20-year-old Trinidadian Keagan Simmons has earned a maiden call-up for the Caribbean Premiere League (CPL), having been drafted into the Guyana Amazon Warriors’ (GAWs’) squad of 17 for the 2019 tournament.
In the draft, which occurred on Wednesday last in London, Simmons was picked up in round 12 as one of two emerging players.
Speaking exclusively with this publication, Simmons explained that he followed the draft live, and witnessed when he was picked up by the GAW.
“I was very happy, because I have a lot of friends in Guyana and also on the team, so I’ll be comfortable in camp”, Simmons noted.
Simmons showed his talent when he dominated the U-19 levels, where he holds the record for the second highest score for West Indies U-19s. He also has scored two centuries at the U-19 showpiece. He sits with an elite group of West Indies batsmen as only the third player from the Caribbean to achieve this feat, after Lendl Simmons and Kraigg Brathwaite.
The elegant left-handed stroke-maker made his debut at the senior ‘Regional’ level for West Indies ‘B’ in the 2018-19 season, wherein he scored 162 runs in five matches in the Super50 tournament.
This top-order batsman who has played alongside Marlon Samuels in that tournament scored two half-centuries, including a high score of 60 against a strong Trinidad and Tobago team, and has a batting average of 32.40.
He also scored 57 against the Windward Islands and 44 against Guyana in the Regional Super50 in his stint with the West Indies ‘B’ team.
Simmons, in 2019, became a contracted player for the upcoming CWI Regional Super50 and 4-Day tournaments, wherein he will represent Trinidad and Tobago.
Pertaining to the future, this talented young player has said his aim is to perform at the best of his ability for the Guyana Amazon Warriors (GAW).
“Guyana has always done well, and I’m eager to show my ability at this level”, Simmons disclosed during his interview with this reporter.
With ‘the biggest party in sport’ slated for September, Simmons has made it evident that he would utilise these few months in the build-up to the tournament for intense preparation.
“My preparation will be smart and intense, and I will make sure I am ready to contribute significantly to the team”, Simmons promised.
“This selection gives me that added confidence in my talent and performances, (knowing they have) been recognised. I feel this is just the start (of) my cricketing career, and I feel I have a lot of developing and growing to (do to) become as good as I can become”, Simmons declared.
Speaking with great composure and intelligence, Simmons told this reporter that he was disappointed in his innings of 91 against New Zealand.
“After that knock I took a lot of lessons, and it taught me what my strengths are, and how to utilise (my strengths) in the limited overs format of the game”, Simmons stated.
The Trinidadian youth sensation has been named among the 12 emerging players listed by CWI. Along with Odean Smith, Simmons has been the second emerging player to be picked up by the GAW; and with the new policies in place, these players will have opportunity to be in the starting XI.