Defending regional under-19 3-day and 50 overs champions the Windward Islands and Trinidad and Tobago both have ambitions to improve on their 2010 triumphs, when they kick start their campaign tomorrow, in the first round of 2011 Trinidad Cement Limited (TCL) regional under-19 tournament.
Speaking to Stabroek Sport yesterday afternoon in short interviews at the Regency Hotel and Grand Coastal Inn respectively, Windwards coach Irvin Warrican and Trinidad and Tobago manager Roland Sampath laid out their teams’ agendas.
Warrican highlighted that his side hopes to retain last year’s 3-day title won in St Kitts, which was only Windwards’ second under-19 title since youth tournaments began in 1968 (the previous victory coming in 2000 when the tournament was held in Guyana).
“Last year’s victory in the 3-day competition was great for us and our business and mission this year is just to play very good cricket, since we are well aware the other teams will do the same. We had a good preparation back home, just completing our under-19 trials a few days ago and I’m confident if we stick to the basics, anything is possible including the double,” said the Windwards coach.
Sampath has been involved with Trinidad cricket for the majority of this decade and oversaw Trinidad’s under-19 double triumphs in 2003 when current West Indies players Dwayne Bravo, Denesh Ramdin, and Ravi Rampaul, participated, along with the 2005 double. He also echoed the sentiments of aiming to improve performances in St Kitts last year.
“We came very close to doing the double last year in St Kitts, given that we finished second in the points standings to the Windwards. So this time we are most definitely looking to retain our 50 overs title along with trying to do the double.
Both the Windwards and Trinidad and Tobago have players coming back from last year’s tournament. The Windwards have 5: captain Kaven Hodge, Sunil Ambris, Emmaule Peter, Shaquielle Brown and Dwight Thomas. Trinidad have four: captain Steven Katwarwoo, Keiron Joseph, Akeal Hosein and Derane Davis.
Of the nine aforementioned players, Hodge, Ambris, Katwaroo, Joseph and Davis are currently in the West Indies Under-19 team developmental tour of the United States with Guyana Under-19 captain Ronsford Beaton and star spinner Amir Khan.
In their respective round 1 matches tomorrow, Windward Islands clash with Barbados at Police Sports Club, Eve Leary. While Trinidad and Tobago take on Jamaica at Everest Cricket Ground, Camp round