Guyana Team Manager Alvin Johnson has cautioned batsmen against repeating careless mistakes and advised them to exercise patience in their encounter against the Combined Campuses and Colleges (CCC) in the fourth round of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) four-day tournament which starts today in Barbados.
“We must avoid losing wickets in clusters and our batsmen need to be more patient,” Johnson said, reiterating that it is important that the side rectify these errors. Speaking with Stabroek Sports yesterday, the manager confirmed that despite losing the first two rounds and drawing the third on Sunday against the Windward Islands, the team is still optimistic about reaching the semi-finals and is aware that it gets harder as the rounds go by. Guyana’s failure to post a formidable first innings score backed up by their inability to dig-in during the second innings is another example of its continued batting woes and an area that needs drastic improvement, Johnson said.
Guyana has been bowled out for below par scores in all of their first innings while flexing their muscle with the ball to skittle out their opponents and swing the momentum back in their favour. However, this advantage has been lost to careless batting in the second knock culminating in a cluster of wickets falling in quick succession. Johnson said the team was forced to play “catch-up” cricket after the first innings collapse and was peeved that this continues to haunt them as the games go by. The manager said he expects the batsmen to knuckle down and graft innings, noting that losing wickets in clusters is becoming a consistent pattern and one which needs to be remedied immediately.
This failure to occupy the crease to set a huge total or chase down targets for victories has definitely proven to be the “monkey on the back” of the Guyana team.
On a positive note, Johnson said that the Guyanese bowlers who were led by West Indies Test spinner Veerasammy Permaul showed that taking 20 wickets is not an impossible task. Speaking about Permaul’s spin partner Devendra Bishoo, the manager said, “I don’t think Bishoo is bowling as good as he can bowl, he looked well against Jamaica and I hope he can get back to bowling as well as we know [he] can.”
Apart from the spinners he lauded the efforts of the fast bowlers Keon Joseph and Raun Johnson, calling the 6’5 Johnson a “bowling revelation for Guyana” while citing Joseph as the more experienced bowler of the two.
Guyana will now seek to snatch outright wins from their next matches and will continue to depend on their batting line-up which has been showing signs of form. Narsingh Deonarine who has been having an off tournament made 38 in his last match and played smartly and aggressively before he was dismissed.
Leon Johnson who will return to lead the side will look to immediately find his feet while Vice-Captain Shiv Chanderpaul, Assad Fudadin, Tagenarine Chanderpaul and Anthony Bramble have all gotten starts but failed to go on and will need to graft their innings more responsibly. The bowlers who have been playing brilliantly will also need to continue their onslaught.
Opener Sewnarine Chattergoon and middle-order batsman Vishaul Singh were axed from the squad ahead of the this match and were replaced by young middle-order batsman Chandarpaul Hemraj and the skipper Johnson.
CCC are at the bottom of the table with 10 points while their opponents are second to last with 13. CCC will depend heavily on the likes of Kyle Corbin, Chadwick Walton, Raymond
Reifer, Kavem Hodge and the veteran Floyd Reifer for vital contributions with the bat, while bowlers Ryan Austin, Akeem Dewar and other play vital roles with the ball.
Guyana will need outright wins in their remaining matches to have a chance at the semi-final.
The Guyana team reads Leon Johnson (Captain) Assad Fudadin, Amir Khan, Shivnarine Chanderpaul (Vice-Captain) Tagenarine Chanderpaul, Narsingh Deonarine, Christopher Barnwell, Anthony Bramble, Veerasammy Permaul, Devendra Bishoo, Raun Johnson, Keon Joseph and Chandrapaul Hemraj
The Manager is Alvin Johnson and the Coach is Esaun Crandon.