By Akeem Greene
February 14, 2016 will be a day long remembered in the history of cricket for West Indian fans, since it was the day 15 young cricketers brought glory to the region by virtue of winning the ICC Under-19 World Cup in Bangladesh for the first time.
The team was captained by Berbician Shimron Hetmyer whose composure in tough situations has come in for high praise and is overwhelmed at the success of the team.
“It’s a very good feeling, to be the first Captain from the West Indies to win the Under-19 World Cup”.
He added, “It’s not only my performance or anyone in particular but a whole team coming together to give us that complete performance.
“Before we left the Caribbean to go there we thought that the pitches would not have been much different from those in the Caribbean but when we played our first practice game and even in the net sessions we found that the pitches were mostly green and has some bounce and pace as well”.
Kemo Paul, the all-rounder who made headlines for mankading (a rule that centres around the dismissal of a non-striker by a bowler who failed to deliver a ball during his run-up) his team through to the semi-finals, set off with a goal to win to the World Cup and did just that; in reflection, Paul credited team work and dedication to the win.
“I think it was dedication, hard work and self belief, I think that is the most important; we believed in our self, we had to win it for the West Indies because no other team had done it so far and we really wanted it bad.”
Opening batsman and wicket keeper Tevin Imlach whose handy stumping in the early overs of the match was big reason for the victory was also prideful.
“A lot of people say it [the stumpings] drove the momentum for the rest of the match, I saw he was operating lackadaisical and I decided to take a throw at the stumps and fortunately it worked for us.”
Imlach who held the top-order together on most occasions revealed the start of the gala tournament was a nervous one for him.
“I was bit nervous at the start but after the first few games, I felt a lot more confident, the team was coming together”.
All three of the players are now focused on returning to the domestic scene where they can put in the necessary performances to now press for spot in the senior side. (Guyana Times)