The everlasting bond: Kevin Sinclair and grandfather Carlton Sinclair

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Carlton Sinclair and Kevin Sinclair [Brandon Corlette photo]
By Brandon Corlette

The moment Kevin Sinclair made it to the senior West Indies white-ball squad and then made his debut, he made the entire nation proud, but his grandfather Carlton Sinclair is beyond proud.

In a recent interview with INews, the Sinclair duo spoke about their everlasting bond and Kevin’s journey to the West Indies team. The 21-year-old off-spinner also spoke about his experience with the senior West Indies team and the areas he aims to improve.

Carlton’s corner

The 73-year-old proud grandfather from Angoy’s Avenue in New Amsterdam, Berbice, spotted talent in his grandson from a tender age. “Since he was around eight years, he was the smallest in the set. Most of these boys were even better than him, but he held on with me. From a very young age I could have seen it in him, he had this thing in him,” Carlton said.

During Sinclair’s early days, his grandfather would always reward him for his success. These rewards would come in the form of Chinese food. Carlton recalled one of the most instrumental matches in Kevin’s career, a match played at the Rose Hall Canje Community Centre.

“I could remember a match when I sent them guys up early. I said: if you make so much runs you will get so much money, and if you take so much wicket, you will get a raise again, we going restaurant. When I come and asked what is the score, Kevin was ripping them boys apart,” Carlton said.

That was the youth match where Kevin took seven wickets for three runs, and scored a century.

Carlton, who wore many caps in Kevin’s life, including mentor and coach, was also a security guard, who invested a lot of his time in Kevin, giving him throwdowns in the school compound and on the basketball court. The duo were always seen working hard and training at the Police Ground located at Shoe Lane, New Amsterdam.

The senior West Indies experience

Kevin, who played three T20 Internationals against Sri Lanka, said it was a special feeling to be in the West Indies squad. “The first day I was a bit nervous because I didn’t know what it’s like, in terms of preparation before a game, I watched and grooved in. Bravo and Pollard, the senior guys were behind me, motivating me and I was grateful for that experience, they boost me and I did fairly well.”

“I am looking to cement a spot in the team. I know that would not come easy, but I need to work on my all-round game harder. In terms of staying and being consistent, you have to be consistent in all three areas. I am looking to improve on my batting, because my bowling has gotten away from my batting, so I am looking to polish up on that area,” Kevin explained.

In his debut match, he claimed 1-26 and in the final match of the T20 series against Sri Lanka, he claimed 1-19 with his off-spin.

Kevin on the bond

“It started when I was small. I was not a power packed in the team, I used to run water until I got a break in the team. He motivated me by telling me how we will go to the restaurant when I do good. I used to look at that as a million dollar for me,” Kevin said.

Kevin, who plays his local cricket for Rose Hall Town Youth and Sports Club, also spoke about that match at Rose Hall Canje, where he took 7-3 and scored a century. He described that match as a turning point in his career. “He used to be motivating, even when I don’t do good, he will vex with me, but I know every morning he used to train me and afternoon before games. All in all, he was behind me through my failures and success,” Kevin disclosed.