Mon | Jan 20, 2020

‘We want to win T20 title’ - Taylor eyes major success in 2020

Published:Sunday | December 22, 2019 | 12:51 AMLennox Aldred - Sunday Gleaner Writer
Stafanie Taylor
Taylor
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She is the crown jewel of West Indies women’s cricket.

Jamaica’s Stafanie Taylor has been there and done that, and the accolades just keep flowing for the effervescent 28-year-old from St Catherine.

Just this week, the right-handed batting all-rounder was named in the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) One Day International (ODI) Team of the Year, and the former Eltham High School student says she has been putting in some extra work and is hoping that the hard work will pay off come February, when the West Indies take part in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup.

It seems such a long time ago since Taylor made her debut for the West Indies at 17 years old against Ireland in 2008. However, the 2011 ICC Women’s Cricketer of the Year says, though difficult, winning another ICC Women’s World T20 title would be a crowning moment in her illustrious career.

“It would be a dream for me to win another major title and I want to lead from the front and take responsibility heading into the T20 World Cup. We did not perform as well as we would like this year as a team, but I think we need to go back to the drawing board and each individual will need to dig deep if we are going to win the title,” Taylor told The Sunday Gleaner.

Taylor was one of the standout players in women’s cricket in 2019, scoring 472 runs in 11 innings. Her achievements did not go unnoticed, as the batting all-rounder is currently second in the ICC women’s ODI batting ranking and second in the all-rounder ranking.

She accredits her latest achievements to the extra work that she has been doing in the nets and on the training ground.

IMPROVING FITNESS

“I have been spending a lot of time in the nets and working on my fitness, that was one of the things I set out to achieve this year ... to improve my fitness and I believe the hard work is paying off,” added Taylor.

With the Christmas holidays in full swing, the players have been off on a break. However, come January 6, 2020, the squad will bounce right back into a three-week training camp before they leave for Australia for the T20 World Cup.

Taylor noted that the core of the squad will remain with the addition of a few new faces, underlining that the mission is still the same and that is to come back with the title. She is fully confident that the mechanisms that have been put in place can deliver the goods for the regional team.

“We have a very good core of players and support staff. I must single out our very own Courtney Walsh, who has been good with our bowlers, also our fielding coach Rayon Griffith has gotten the team sharp. They have challenged us and set very high standards and so it’s for us to go out and put in the hard work and I think things can work out in our favour,” said Taylor.

The 2016 champions West Indies have been drawn in Group ‘B’ in the ICC Women’s World T20 alongside England, South Africa, Pakistan and Thailand, who they open the tournament against on February 22 at the WACA in Perth.