National coach Esaun Crandon and Manager Alvin Johnson said they believe that the full-strength Guyana team which is set to participate in the NAGICO Super50 tournament which gets underway in Trinidad and Tobago on Thursday has what it takes to win the Regional limited overs title for the 10th time.
The pair spoke to Stabroek Sports on the eve of the team’s departure for the twin-island republic of Trinidad and Tobago where the nine-time winners will seek their 10th title in the 50-overs-a-side format.
Crandon, who was confident as he described his team, said that they are fully focussed on the task ahead and knows
they will come to the party while Johnson was a bit more vocal on his thoughts about the team and its goal.
“The mood in the camp is upbeat,” he said, adding…“there is nothing like preparation.”
Johnson was making reference to the vigorous nearly one-month period of encampment the team underwent ahead of the competition.
He said thanks to the gruelling training the players were now “physical ready” and “mentally prepared.”
Led by the explosive West Indies all-rounder Christopher Barnwell the Guyana team is considered among the best team on paper according to many and Johnson reiterated that fact and openly admitted that the team was indeed… “The best team put together in a long time.”
He said that the likes of the experienced trio of Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Narsingh Deonarine and Ramnaresh Sarwan could play a big role in the team’s middle order adding that he hopes Sarwan comes to the party in a major way as his expertise in the top order will be hugely needed.
Regarding Deonarine the manager said that he knows the left-hander is in good form and also had a good West Indies tour of New Zealand which adds to his confidence.
Chanderpaul, who is the most capped West Indies Test player, brings mental toughness, experience and the ability to switch gears at any time, traits that Johnson lauded as weapons for the team’s success.
Sharing his views on the team’s strengths, Johnson explained that despite the loads of all-round talent the team will bank heavily on their batters.
“The team’s strength lies in their batting. On paper we have the best batting unit.”
He further stated that the bowlers also play a crucial part in the team’s endeavors.
Overall he said that his expectancy of the team was nothing short of high after knowing that the players are raring to go after the title they last held back in 2005 when they won a thriller in fading light against Barbados at the Georgetown Cricket Club ground, Bourda.
The team is scheduled to wing out at 7:00hrs this morning. Guyana is placed in Group A with defending Champions Windward Islands, Jamaica along with Ireland and will be playing their opening match against the Irish.