Helmot likes Pooran’s international prospects

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, CMC — Trinbago Knight Riders head coach, Simon Helmot, has celebrated Nicholas Pooran’s international call-up, and says the left-hander has the ability to succeed at the highest level.

The 20-year-old Pooran was named in West Indies’ Twenty20 squad for the three-match tour of Pakistan later this month after a relatively successful run for Barbados Tridents in this year’s Caribbean Premier League.

“I saw his potential from the first CPL and it’s a wonderful story that he is soon to be an international player,” Helmot said of the wicketkeeper/batsman.

Nicholas Pooran
Nicholas Pooran

Barbados Tridents stroke-maker Nicholas Pooran.

“What has always amazed me about this kid is while he doesn’t have the intimidating physical look like other West Indies boys like (Chris) Gayle, (Kieron) Pollard, (Andre) Russell, (Darren) Sammy for his age, he can hit the ball as clean as any of them.”

Pooran played the first two seasons of the CPL for hometown franchise Trinidad Red Steel — now Trinbago Knight Riders — but had modest success. He had a top score of 54 in his first season and managed only 107 runs from 10 innings in 2014. Injuries from a vehicular accident kept him out of the 2015 edition but he returned for Tridents this year, with a couple of cameos to catch the eyes of selectors.

Going forward, Helmot advised Pooran to brush up on his glovework and to solicit help from fellow Trinidadian and discarded Test keeper, Denesh Ramdin, in this area.

“He has an X-factor that will be well regarded worldwide the more people see of him,” the Australian said.

“My only suggestion is for him to call up his countryman Denesh Ramdin, who is an excellent keeper, to assist with the part of his game.”

Pooran, who has played three first class matches, described the Windies call-up as a “dream come true”.

“It was an amazing feeling, I was packing to my bags to travel to St. Kitts for Leeward Islands team camp for the upcoming domestic season when I got the call from the chairman of selectors,” Pooran was quoted as saying.

“I couldn’t believe it and it’s a dream come true, because an aim of mine was to make the West Indies team before 21.”

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