By Brandon Corlette
Take a moment and imagine you scored the second highest aggregate for your team in the last Regional Super50 tournament and for the following tournament, you are dropped from the squad, not even listed on the stand-by. Pain, that is the feeling that comes to one’s imagination.
After scoring 334 runs from eight games at an average of 55.66 with a high-score of 97 in the last Super50 for Guyana Jaguars, Jonathan Foo has found himself out of the team for next month’s Super50 in Antigua.
Foo’s situation is one of delicacy, he, and others who made the 15-man squad was described as unfit by the selectors. But Foo was omitted and others made the cut.
In an exclusive interview with this publication, the 30-year old Foo said he is disappointed and hurt about this omission but he is remaining focus and is aiming to work hard on his fitness and make a return to the National side.
“To be honest I’m very disappointed and hurt. Reason for my omission were the selectors call on me being ‘unfit’, I failed to reach that benchmark that was set out but I was also not the only one who didn’t, but of course it’s not an excuse for me to be unfit as well,” Foo disclosed.
Not all Sport Journalists in the country can boast the luxury of attending the recent Guyana Jaguars fitness test at Leonora, followed by the three practice matches and match simulations at La Bonne Intention (LBI). Fortunately, I was there and witnessed the Jaguars players in action, first-hand.
Foo said that his motivation is still present and he is fully committed and available for all cricket once he is given that opportunity. “Once I am given that opportunity to represent my country I will try my very best to do what’s required at that point and make myself available for every situation given,” the man from Albion Community Centre Cricket Club noted.
Reflecting on his 2019 season with the Guyana Jaguars, Foo described his stint as a decent.
“I am still hurt, I had sleepless nights when I failed to finish two games which would have get us a step closer to the championship. I think maybe it should have get me over the line with this year selection but as the chairman of selectors mentioned, fitness is as important as performance,” Foo explained.
The year 2020 has been a strange year for many. Foo did not play much cricket after his 2019 Regional Super50 season and he is not a contracted Jaguars player. During the practice matches, Foo looked dangerous with the bat.
Prior to the fitness assessment, Foo encountered a major set-back. “I had a major set-back leading up to the fitness assessment when Romario Shepherd tested positive for Covid-19, the entire set of players who were training with him had to undergo the test and I was also training with one of the guys who went in that training. I took no chances and I also did the test and undergone quarantine for ten days. But as I said, it’s not an excuse for me not to meet the required fitness mark,” Foo added.
At age 30, Foo still has years of cricket in him, once he put in the hard yards of work his skill will coincide when he improves that fitness and he can show dominance as he did in the 2019 Super50. He said he is not seeing his age as an issue since some players in the current Guyana team are older than him.