Sir Curtly Ambrose impressed with Shepherd’s brilliance
During the fourth One-Day International match between West Indies ‘A’ and India ‘A’ at the Coolidge Cricket Ground in Antigua, former West Indies’ fast-bowling icon Sir Curtly Ambrose opined that Guyanese bowler Romario Shepherd is ‘one for the future’.
“I think Shepherd has what it takes to play at the higher level,” Ambrose, 55, declared during his stint at commentary.
He added that he has had the opportunity to work with Shepherd at various West Indies fast bowling camps, and has noted that Shepherd has a good attitude towards learning.
Shepherd, a brisk right-arm fast bowling all-rounder who plays club cricket for Tucber Park in New Amsterdam, has currently shown great improvement against India ‘A’ in the One-Day tour. Shepherd has taken 7 wickets in 4 matches, with figures of 4-36 against some high-quality Indian players, all of whom had experience in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Bowling the new ball for West Indies ‘A’, Shepherd surprised the batsmen with some quick deliveries.
Shepherd’s top delivery in the series came against opening batsman Anmolpreet Singh, whom he dismissed with a deadly bouncer. Another good delivery came against Manish Pandey; who, on a century, was undone by a beautiful Yorker by which he was trapped leg-before.
Shepherd has certainly caught the attention of Ambrose and West Indies’ Chief Selector Robert Haynes. His strategy is to rush the batsmen. In the space of 3 balls in the fourth One-Day game, he hit two Indian batsmen on the helmet.
Ambrose, who played 98 Test matches and 176 One Day Internationals for West Indies, from which he had garnered more than 620 wickets, urged Shepherd to stay focused during the fourth One-Day game.
A player for both the Guyana Jaguars Team and the Guyana Amazon Warriors Team, Shepherd has been a consistent performer in the Regional arena. Since making his Regional debut at the First Class level in 2017, he has taken 67 wickets in only 21 matches. He has since earned a call-up to the West Indies ‘A’ Team in March 2018, and his performance has been improving with every match.
In the recently concluded Regional tournaments for 2018/19, Shepherd finished as the best fast bowler with 37 wickets in 10 matches. He had also shown his ability with the bat in that same Regional 4-Day tournament, recording three half-centuries.
In the fourth One-Day match against India ‘A’, Shepherd again proved his ability to bat by registering an eight-ball 21. With India touring the Caribbean in the upcoming month, Shepherd, currently in the West Indies ‘A’ Team, will be aiming to strengthen his performances in order that he might earn a maiden call-up to the West Indies senior team. (Brandon Corlette)