Pacer Gabriel aiming for consistency

BENONI, South Africa, CMC – Fast bowler Shannon Gabriel did not make much of an impression in West Indies’ three-day game against a South Africa Invitational XI which finished in a draw yesterday.

He sent down just five overs for 14 runs during the local side’s innings which was destroyed by left-arm seamer Sheldon Cottrell who picked up a five-wicket haul.

With the opening Test bowling off next week, Gabriel said he was just looking to continue to improve on the tour.

“I’m just gaining experience as I go along. One thing I am trying to be is more consistent in my bowling in terms of line and length,” he said here Friday.

Fast bowler Shannon Gabriel.
Fast bowler Shannon Gabriel.

“Everything is good, I think I am headed in the right direction. I know once I do the basics and keep working hard wickets will come my way and success will come my way.”

The 26-year-old has played nine Tests since making his debut on the 2012 tour of England, and has claimed 22 wickets.

However, he has not managed to tie down a spot in the regional side, and faces more competition on the current tour with the likes of Cottrell, Kemar Roach, Jerome Taylor and Jason Holder in the squad.

The Trinidadian, who bowls with a fair turn of pace, said the most important thing was getting the fast bowling unit to perform together.

“We have a good crop of fast bowlers here. Jerome Taylor and Kemar Roach have had good success at the international level so it’s just about learning from them,” he said.

“And we’re helping each other as a bowling group so hopefully we can go out and put our best foot forward.”

He is being overseen on tour by legendary former Windies pacer Sir Curtly Ambrose who is part of the management team, and said Sir Curtly’s advice had been valuable so far.

“It’s good to have him around. It’s a wealth of experience he brings to the team so I just sit down with him and pick his mind sometimes, find out how what he did that was successful so I can take that into my game.”

West Indies face South Africa in the first Test in Centurion starting next Wednesday.

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