The Manger and Assistant Coach of the Guyana Jaguars team 36-year-old Rayon Griffith is satisfied with the way things are going with his team which continues to the dominate the WICB PCL First-Class cricket Franchise after four rounds.
Defending champions Jaguars lead the table with 70 points, 20 more than second placed Jamaica who the Jaguars face in Jamaica from Friday in their last match for the year.
“I am very satisfied with the way things are going so far. The team spirit is very high and everyone helps each other in the nets. One of the reasons for our success over the past two years, apart from the intense preparations, is that our team has become more matured now and everyone is fit and ready to go” Griffith, a former Guyana fast bowler said.
Also the Chairman of the National Selectors, Griffith said that West Indies Under-19 opener Shemron Hetymer left Trinidad on Monday evening for Guyana where he will stay for a few days before departing for the U-19 World Cup Camp in preparation for next year’s ICC U-19 World Cup in Bangladesh from January 27 to February 14.
“Because we leave directly for Jamaica from here we included young Taignarine Chanderpaul in our squad. He will open in Jamaica as Hetymer’s replacement” the Jaguars Manager said.
“He has been one of the players not selected in the starting line-up who has been training and practicing everyday with the Jaguars and any of the Academy players, who are also contacted and paid a monthly salary, are eligible for selection. We still have five more games next year after the Super50 tournament is played in January” Griffith continued.
While the Jaguars has batted consistently and made four 300 plus totals with two of them being above 400 along with having the most batting points as well as having the most bowling points of any other team (10); their inability to polish off the opposition’s lower order has been a noticeable weakness.
Griffith, who played 22 First-Class games for Guyana between 1999-2007, said that the bowlers still have some work to do in understanding what is required to dismiss tail enders.
“We have some work to do and what approach we take when it comes to getting rid of the tail. We have to be patient and bowl to them in the same way we bowl to the top order instead of trying too hard to dismiss them which results in the bowlers trying too many things and giving away too many bad balls.” He noted.
Griffith feels the spinners bowled too flat and quick but does not think it’s a big problem and there is no danger of the team, despite its success, becoming complacent.
“At the end of this game we spoke about not being complacent, especially since we are on top, this is the last game for the year and everybody is getting ready for the Christmas holidays” the team official disclosed.
“But I don’t think that will happen since this is a very competitive team with everyone looking to do well as they compete for places especially when the West Indies players return” Griffith added.
“I believe that the pitch in Jamaica will be a lot faster and have more bounce than this one here (Trinidad). I suspect that they would want to have some grass on the pitch since they feel our batsmen are not too comfortable against short balls” Griffith opined.
“We won’t take Jamaica lightly even though they have not been putting up big scores but their bowling is not too bad, we are confident and we are ready for our last game” Griffith concluded.
Apart from being the most successful team, the Jaguars also have the tournament’s leading bowler and the batsman with the second most runs. Left-arm spinner Gudakesh Motie, in his first season at this level, has 27 wickets with three five-wicket hauls.
Left-handed middle order batsman Vishaul Singh has amassed 359 runs from five innings with two centuries including a highest score of 150 and the best Average of 71.80. Barbadian Shamarh Brooks is the leading scorer with 394 runs from seven innings.
(Interview with Sean Devers (Kaieteur news))