It can’t possibly get worse than last season! Guyana’s Head Coach Esuan Crandon, the former Guyana fast bowler will have his hands full trying to lift Guyana’s cricket fortunes when the inaugural WICB Regional four-day First-Class Franchise season commences on Friday with the Jaguars facing the Leeward Islands at Providence.
“Our performance last season was very disappointing. We will have to put it behind us and seek to improve, try for greater consistency moving forward. We have done a lot of soul-searching and planning after last season and in our preparations for this season. With this new franchise system in place and a longer season ahead, the players are all eager to go,” Crandon said.
Asked what he thinks needs to be fixed for Guyana’s performance to improve Crandon said the team realised that one of the main problems was the opening pair had not performed as consistently as the team would have liked.
“This has meant that we did not have the base for big first innings totals to put our opponents under pressure. We have also been working hard on situational-awareness in the hope that the thought processes of the players would improve and we will be able to endure and come out on top during those pressure moments in the game. We have had a number of young players and we have asked them to learn the game – and quickly – prior to this season when they were only five or six matches, but this season presents a good opportunity and we have asked them to prepare themselves in every area, so they can perform well for the team, themselves and Guyana,” Crandon explained.
“We have a pretty good balance for the first few matches – no less than six Test players are available to us – a pretty good range of players from which to choose. It looks good on paper, but we have to prove it on the field. We are hoping that we can make full use of home advantage, something which we have failed to do in the recent past, and I think the players are all in the right frame of mind approaching the start of the new season,” Crandon continued.
Crandon feels in order to maintain intensity throughout the long season fitness will be vitally important and the players will have to manage their workloads throughout the season, specifically the bowlers, so that they can sustain the level of performance that is required to make the team a competitive force.
“It will also call for players to be honest with the management team about the nature of their injuries. Some players can play through the pain barrier and through their injuries, but others cannot, so we need to know to be able manage them properly,” the Berbican pointed out.
Crandon said Barbadian all-rounder Raymon Reifer is fitting in very well and getting accustomed to the playing conditions in Guyana.
“The pitch plays much lower and slower and favours the spin bowlers than they do in Barbados, but we have been talking to him about the lengths he has to bowl and how he will need to adjust his stroke-play as a batsman coming from Barbados where the pitches offer more pace and bounce. He is coping well and the players are making him feel welcomed. He has a key role to play as a batting all-rounder and we are looking forward for his contribution throughout this tournament.” the former Guyana pacer said.
Crandon thinks highly of opening batsman Rajindra Chandrika. “He scored a double-hundred in our Inter-County championship and we are expecting big things from him, seeing he was also a graduate of the Sagicor West Indies High Performance Centre. He has gotten a few good starts in previous matches, but we are hoping he can help solve our problem at the top of the order,” Crandon informed
“Further down the order, we have Vishal Singh and we are hoping with the presence of experienced batsman like Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Narsingh Deonarine and Leon Johnson that he could add some depth to his game. We also expect Ronsford Beaton to play that leading role for us with the new-ball with our traditional strength in the spin bowling department to offer support,” the Head Coach concluded.
(Taken from Kaieteur News, by Sean Devers)