Miller praises TKR camp environment
While still in the infancy of his coaching career, Jamaican Nikita Miller has already tasted success through his involvement with the Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR) in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL), which ended last week.
A left-arm spinner in his playing days, Miller’s transition into coaching has been a good one so far, and the former West Indies player credits the total team effort from the Trinidad franchise for their fourth CPL title.
Miller, 38 years old, was part of the TKR franchise as an assistant coach with specific responsibilities for the spinners, and the former Jamaica captain says the success of the team came down to a well-thought-out plan that was well executed by the management.
Miller said that the entire franchise set-up was ripe for success with the team having a coach for all the rudiments of the game. That consisted of a batting coach, fielding coach, seam-bowling coach, and spin-bowling coach, along with the manager, trainer, massage therapist, logistics manager, physiotherapist, and general manager.
“When the guys went out on the park to play, there was no worries about anything other than cricket,” Miller said. “All the off-the-field issues were taken care of, and everyone had a specific role to play. I thought we did that better than everyone.”
Miller said that the owners gave the coaching staff the autonomy to execute and that there was no interference or micromanaging, which allowed the players freedom.
He said that the team had two strong leaders who demonstrated professionalism throughout the truncated tournament.
“First of all, we had two very strong leaders in captain Kieron Pollard and vice-captain Dwayne Bravo,” he said. “These are guys who everyone looks up to, even the overseas players. They look out for the players and back them 100 per cent. I believe those guys held the team together, and the franchise, as a whole, was always like a family.”
That family-like atmosphere was a breeding ground for healthy competition as Miller said the team competed in almost everything they did, even off the field.
“We would play domino competition and even football competition and handed out prizes to the winners, and that helped with the team bonding and unity throughout our time in the biosecure bubble,” he said.
Miller said this environment was in stark contrast to that of the Jamaica Tallawahs, who finished as semi-finalists in spite of inconsistent performances.
The former Tallawahs player said that the Tallawahs had enough talent to compete in the CPL but needed to recruit better and put a more solid management structure in place.
“From what I saw in the tournament, it didn’t seem there was any togetherness or camaraderie on that park that you were looking for,” he said. “They need to have a rebuild, and I believe the structure needs to be stronger.”