Ahead of their clash with the Guyana Amazon Warriors that will kick start the 2018 HERO Caribbean Premier League (CPL) tournament, St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots’ Head Coach, Donovan Miller, says Chris Gayle will not be under any pressure to score runs.
Speaking exclusively to Stabroek News at the commencement of their training session at the Providence National Stadium, the Head Coach of last season’s runners-up stated: “We are not depending on Chris [Gayle], but we are hoping he scores some runs but there is no pressure on Chris to score runs.”
Miller added that the team was “well balanced” noting that Gayle, along with some key players, brings a lot more to the table.
Gayle, Evin Lewis and Carlos Brathwaite “bring a lot in terms of playing but also what is important is what they bring to the changing room. They are very experienced guys and have been around a lot and that’s what they bring to the changing room. Great to have those guys and hope it goes well,” said Miller.
In 2017, Patriots defeated Guyana Amazon Warriors in both their encounters by four wickets when they played in Florida.
Miller said there are two new additions to the side.
“Anton [Devcich] brings a lot, he is a world-class player. He is a T20 specialist and very professional in what he does. We are very pleased to have him here and I think he will make a massive impact.”
Miller also added that 18-year-old Napal leg break bowler, Sandeep Lamichhane…“is a young exciting guy, very confident, knows what he is doing and we are very pleased to have him.”
Looking at this year’s tournament, Miller said: “The tournament in general looks very exciting this year. I think looking around at the teams everyone will be buzzing and looking to start well and we are no different from theirs.”
In their title quest, Miller acknowledged that not much wrong was done last year but it was just a case of them being a bit unlucky.
“Last year we didn’t do much wrong we were unlucky so we wouldn’t be looking to do much different but we have a slightly different squad this year, we have a bit more depth in our team and I think all the guys are raring and hungry to go so.
“Different year, so we continue to assess each game as we go along and see where we go from there,” he said.
When asked on the impact of playing in Guyana, Miller stated that there is “no secret to how exciting the people and the fans are here, how well supported Guyana are, they are very difficult team to beat, one of the teams that have always been set there and about and I expect no different this year.”
Judging from the livelihood and vibe in the training camp, the upbeat coach stated that this is what fuels their campaign.
“We look to try create an environment where everyone is relaxed, having fun and being professional at the same time. It’s all about the players so we try look at the players so we give them what they require, what they need and hopefully they go out there and do their jobs,” he stated.
Miller also touched on the issue of injuries to the players.
“There are some with a little bit of niggles but the physio has looked at it and I think the full team will be available.”
Guyana Amazon Warriors will face St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots in their first match at Providence tomorrow from 18:00hrs.