From strength to strength - Jamaica Scorpions' Derval Green pleased with progress but aiming higher
Derval Green is enjoying life as a cricketer playing for the Jamaica Scorpions at the moment.
Green, 30 years old, made the Jamaica Scorpions Regional Super50 team in 2015 and eventually forced his way into the side for the Regional four-Day team as well. Over the last two seasons, he has become Jamaica's most reliable seam bowler. He now has 46-first class wickets at 26 apiece and took 27 of those wickets in last season's four-Day competition and proved an absolute handful to most regional batsmen. His exploits in regional cricket have not gone unnoticed by the Windies selectors, and he was selected to be part of the Windies B team to the inaugural Global T20 Canada tournament last year.
"I felt very proud to represent the West Indies, but I knew this was just the beginning of where I wanted to be," he said.
Green started life at New Hope All-Age in White House, Westmoreland. In a well-known cricket community, it was not unusual that he turned to the game. He was a stylish right-handed batsman at that stage who bowled useful medium pace. His knowledge of the game and his leadership abilities saw him captaining New Hope to the all-Island all-age title. His exploits in those early days saw him making the Jamaica Under-15 team in 2004, where his natural leadership qualities again saw him leading the team. He made the Jamaica Under-19 team in 2007, and yes, you guessed it, he was also the captain.
He was, at the time, attending St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) and was earmarked by many as a future national senior player, if not a national senior captain. He also played one season of the ISSA daCosta Cup for STETHS as a bustling striker and, had it not been for cricket, may well have taken football more seriously.
After high school, Green went to the GC Foster College of Physical Education and Sport for his tertiary education. Strong performances for GC Foster and Westmoreland in parish cricket were enough to get him a call-up to national senior trials. By now, his bowling had overtaken his batting. He was bowling a brisk medium fast with the ability to swing the ball, especially away from the right-handers. He feels his action naturally allows him to swing the ball but has also credited former coach Robert Samuels and current manager Andrew Richardson, who he says have helped him with this skill.
NEED FOR IMPROVEMENT
While his bowling has come on leaps and bounds since his days in youth cricket, his batting has declined, although he is still capable of playing some good innings. He does have a 50 and two 40s in first-class cricket, but he will be the first to admit that his batting needs improvement.
Green is currently on the mend from a knee injury he sustained in the first game of the season, away to the Barbados Pride. He had taken three for 10 in 5.1 overs in a superb opening spell when the knee gave way. He is back in training but feels right now that he is only "65 to 70 per cent" and describes being sidelined as very frustrating.
"It's every player's dream to be on the park all the times but injuries are a part of the sport, and I just have to be supporting the boys on the park at the moment," he said.
Green expects to be fully fit within the next two to three weeks. Listening to dancehall music and spending time with friends are high on the list of things he does to relax. Agent Sasco, he says, is his favourite artiste.