Andre Percival, Coach of the Guyana women’s cricket team, yesterday stressed the importance of the team gelling properly ahead of next month’s West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Regional limited overs tournament to be played in Guyana.
As customary, the ladies, including West Indies star Shemaine Campbell and senior player Kavita Yadram, gathered at the La Bonne Intention (LBI) indoor facility, East Coast Demerara, where they prepared for a few weeks of rigorous training as they seek to do well on home soil. Percival, a former national all-rounder told Stabroek Sport that it was important to ensure the women had a more close-knit relationship heading into the competition.
“We’re regrouping after a year and the good thing is that most of the players seem to be in good shape and that’s good because that will help the training and practice sessions to go well.”
The former Berbice skipper said that with the mixture of youth and experience in the side, he will seek to ensure that the batting department, which let them down last year, is revamped way ahead of game time.
“Looking back at last year we needed more togetherness as a team. The batters need to score more this year because the bowling and fielding is always good we just need to put runs on the board.”
Speaking on the presence of the senior women in the squad and the advantage it lends with regards to the less experienced players who might be playing at this level for the first time, Percival said he was happy to have some of his top ladies in the mix but hoped some of the younger players who are currently in Trinidad for an Under-19 invitational, could perform well and put the more senior females under pressure. “The experienced players like Campbell add a lot of energy to the team, basically having them around is good for the team. We’ve got a lot of experienced players who have been there many years ago but I would like to see some players who are at the u19 in Trinidad step up and give the senior players a fight for their positions,” he declared.
He also said the presence of the big players will allow the newbies to go about their game in a more confident manner.
“Last year we struggled a bit, because the unit was not there but we have a lot of talent this year and the players have a good opportunity to make up for last year.”
He confirmed that his current quota of 24 players will practice and train until the squad is ready to be trimmed to the final 14 ahead of the July 7 start. He also noted that a few practice matches will be arranged but that will depend on the weather.