FOLLOWING a miserable first-class season earlier this year and with the implementation of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Professional Cricket League which bowls off this weekend, local cricketers were hard at training with the aim of being one of 15 players to attract contracts.
With Cricket Guy Inc..(CGI) getting same out of the way by retaining its 10 players and later contracting another five including Barbadian Raymon Reifer, it was down to preparations for the 2014/2015 WICB Professional Cricket League, which replaces the old first-class season.
Yesterday, members of CGI’s team known as the Guyana Jaguars were hard at training in sweltering heat at the Georgetown Cricket Club ground, after undergoing several intense net sessions at that venue and the Chetram Singh Centre of Excellence indoor facility at LBI, East Coast Demerara.
During the course of the day, secretary of Guyana Cricket Board Anand Sanasie unveiled the logo for the Guyana Jaguars, which consists of a jaguar’s head bursting forth over the Golden Arrowhead with claws drawn ready to pounce for action.
In an invited comment as it relates to the team’s preparation and composition for Friday’s first-round four-day game against the Leeward Islands franchise team, Sanasie said he was definitely pleased with the reports as regards the encampment period, which began shortly after the GCB’s Inter-county tournament.
“First of all, our logo incorporates the colours of the national flag with the jaguar, symbolising strength, dexterity and courage and we do hope same transcends from the players and is shown in their performances in their three home matches at the commencement of this tournament.
“We’ve had very long preparations, commencing at the end of our Inter-county tournament, followed by a lengthy encampment period with two practice matches that were keenly contested while the technical staff’s report on the level of discipline and fitness was impressive.” said Sanasie.
He added, “Hoping to see the team go out there and win their first three games which will be played at home, as they are not short of cricket or cricket-related activities over the past three weeks during which time the weather was kind to us also, aiding in our preparations.”
As it relates to the composition of the 13-man squad for the first round clash, Sanasie believes that the technical staff was faced with a herculean task in arriving at the final 13, since there was a good batch of players to select from, outside of the 15 contracted players.
“When you look at the caliber of players we have available at our disposal at the moment, you will see a good batch including the 15 who were contracted by the WICB, but unfortunately only 11 can play on the field and they were tasked with selecting the best possible 13, from which that final 11 will be chosen.
“There is a long season ahead while some players from that same 13-man squad would be departing to represent the West Indies against South Africa and who they are I don’t know; but I do know the battle for a place is truly on and I am happy to know that Guyana’s cricket has reached a point where players are now battling hard for a place on the national team,” said Sanasie.
The Jaguars will be led by West Indies Test opener Leon Johnson and he will have West Indies ‘A’ team middle-order batsman Assad Fudadin as his deputy, while the 40-year-old Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Narsingh Deonarine, Veerasammy Permaul, Devendra Bishoo, Ronsford Beaton and Christopher Barnwell, who all played for the West Indies in various formats of the game, are included.
The 13-man squad reads: Leon Johnson (captain), Assad Fudadin, Rajendra Chandrika, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Trevon Griffith, Vishaul Singh, Narsingh Deonarine, Raymon Reifer, Anthony Bramble, Christopher Barnwell, Veerasammy Permaul, Devendra Bishoo and Ronsford Beaton.
(Taken from Guyana Chronicle, by Calvin Roberts)