‘I’m going to relish this opportunity with the Warriors’

— says Rayad Emrit

All-rounder Rayad Emrit says teamwork can help the new look Guyana Amazon Warriors team to win their first Hero Caribbean Premier League (HCPL) T20 title come June when the Biggest Party in the Caribbean bowls off.

The Trinidadian spoke exclusively with Stabroek Sport yesterday,  Touching on numerous topics ranging from the team’s chances this year to his own endeavours during and after the tournament.

After spending some three seasons with former HCPL champs Barbados Tridents, Emrit was scooped up by the local franchise at the recent auction.

 Rayad Emrit
Rayad Emrit

A new environment and newer opportunities await him.

“It’s my first year with the Guyana Amazon Warriors, new opportunities, different environment. I’ve been with the Barbados Tridents for three years and they have been good to me but I’m going to relish this opportunity with the Warriors this year,” said Emrit.

All the teams, including the Warriors, have undergone major changes to the composition of their teams.

Guyana has now reacquainted itself with New Zealand opener Martin Guptill who will lead the side which includes new faces likes: West Indian Dwayne Smith, Australian leg-spinner Adam Zampa and batsman Chris Lynn and Pakistan all-rounder Sohail Tanvir among others.

Emrit noted that gelling will be very important for the new players coming into the side this season, adding that working with Guptill and having him lead the side will be good for the Amazon Warriors.

“Guptill has been one of the most exciting T20 players in the world. He has shown his class around the world and in the CPL tournament thus far.

“Having him as skipper is new to me and it’s important for him to know the local players. Hopefully he will fit in quickly and lead us to the championship this year. Obviously it’s not the same team as in the past but we are definitely a good side we need to show it out in the field and middle,” he added.

He continued, “We have a good management team with Coach Harper so I think we’re in line for a good season this year. We also have Smithy (Dwayne) who has also played for the Tridents for the last three seasons as well and he’s one of the more destructive players in the world, so hopefully he can come to the table and lend his seniority as well.”

The right-arm seamer will be one of the key members in the side and with a stingy average of 18.56 in T20’s to go along with his 74 scalps and while his ability as a batsman has never been under scrutiny, the 35-year-old admitted that he will have a pivotal role to play around the team.

“Yes I’m one of the most experienced players in the team so I’ll definitely have to show that on and off the field. I’m going to give it my best and help the junior players in the team which I think is well-balanced. Most people think it’s not the best team but if we play to our potential we could definitely go far. I sincerely feel so. I think it’s about getting the guys to work together and to play together as quickly as possible and hopefully the camp will do that”.

Although only playing two One Day Internationals (ODI) for the West Indies way back in 2007 against India, Emrit has remained one of the top all-rounders in the Region, whether it be T20’s, 50-overs or Four Day cricket.

“My aim is to get more wickets and score some runs I would like to bat a bit higher but you know the composition of the team and also it’s about making the final XI but once I get the opportunity I’ll make full use of it.

“I really want to take wickets this year and help us win help us win the tournament. After CPL it’s the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) so hopefully I’ll be there again this year and if the opportunity arrives to play for the West Indies again ill grab it with both hands, so we’ll see how that goes.”

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